The National Crittenton Foundation in Portland, Oregon, has announced a $2 million grant from the Walmart Foundation to support Crittenton's network of agencies working in the areas of nutrition, academic achievement, and job readiness and career development for girls and young women.
As part of its Assets for Life program, Crittenton will disburse grants ranging from $60,000 to $119,000 to twenty agencies, enabling them to assist marginalized girls and young women ages 12 to 24 in developing the resources they will need to break intergenerational cycles of destructive behaviors and thrive, including positive self-esteem, physical health, academic achievement, and job and career paths to secure stable living-wage jobs.
For example, the Portland-based Salvation Army will use its grant to start a "farm to fork" effort that includes a community garden and cooking classes, and the Crittenton Center in Sioux City, Iowa, will launch a program to help girls and young women earn a high school diploma, GED, or college degree.
Before applying to receive funding, agency leaders met to shape Assets for Life and hear directly from girls and young women living in marginalized communities to learn about their unmet needs in these areas. "We learned that healthy food is difficult to access, there are many barriers to staying in school, and it is difficult to find and maintain a job," said Jeanette Pai-Espinosa, president of the National Crittenton Foundation. "It is rare to receive resources that allow the agencies to build on existing programs and provide direct services without a lot of constraints. We thank the Walmart Foundation for its generous gift that will make a positive, immediate, and long-term impact on the health, education, and employment of the young women in this country who need it most."
For a complete list of recipients, visit the National Crittenton Foundation Web site.