Parents and children gain motivation to succeed from each other. The benefits of addressing the needs of both simultaneously are far greater than when attempting to deal with their issues separately or in a one-off manner.
The 2-Gen Approach addresses the vulnerable areas of low-income families through a framework that includes:
Education is the key to opportunity.
For generations in America, a high school diploma was sufficient to allow a hardworking individual to enter a job he/she could work at for 20 or 30 years, climbing the ladder to management and an income that provided adequately.
Parents knew their children would be better off than they were because of this hard work and the American Dream would be recognized for their entire family.
Children from low-income families start out at a deficit regardless of the hidden talents and potential within them.
The complexity of their circumstances often means they are unable to live in an environment that promotes curiosity and learning, dreaming, and aiming for goals outside of their immediate needs.
Post-secondary education for the parents combined with high-quality tutoring and education for the child builds on the mutual motivation of support and leads to an enhanced learning environment at home.
Social Capital is a network of people and institutions that allows individuals to have access to relationships, role models, and experiences that enable them to see possibilities for their lives and connect them to opportunities.
Social Capital enables an individual’s true potential to be brought to light as they interact with others who are on varying paths in life. It provides a broader perspective, and the benefit of knowledge from experiences outside of their own that can lead to opportunity.
Food insecurity in children is directly linked to developmental risks, learning disabilities, poor academic outcomes, behavioral and emotional problems. As they grow into adulthood, there are additional long-term consequences such as higher healthcare costs, lost productivity, lower academic achievement, and lower earnings.
In effect, food insecurity leads to more food insecurity and a loss of the potential genius contributed to our community. The increase in healthcare costs has been estimated at $160.7 billion in one year alone. One study found that “living at less than 200% of the federal poverty line results in a net loss of 8.2 years of quality-adjusted life expectancy at age 18.”
The 2-Gen approach seeks to link stable housing options and transportation support so families can pursue meaningful careers, stable education and home environments, and social networks that encourage personal growth.
These mechanisms lead to financial wealth building capabilities and sustainability for the next generation.