Northfield Promise receives national support to accelerate change

Northfield Promise and Every Hand JoinedNorthfield Promise, in partnership with Red Wing’s Every Hand Joined, is one of five communities across the country selected for the 2016 Accelerator Fund after a competitive application process. These network members, along with the six communities chosen for the first round in 2015, will receive support from a $12 million investment fund.

The communities belong to the StriveTogether Cradle to Career Network and will work to expedite progress toward better educational outcomes for all kids by joining a learning network run by the national education-focused network, StriveTogether.

“Our goal as an organization is to prove that we can achieve consistent and sustained improvements in student outcomes at scale,” StriveTogether Managing Director Jeff Edmondson said. “The Accelerator Fund is designed to help communities reach education goals faster while building the strength of partnerships to accelerate their progress over the long term. We believe these five communities will identify and spread practices that achieve results, particularly for the most vulnerable children, and capture lessons that will advance other collective impact partnerships across the country.”

Strive NetworkThe five new Accelerator Fund partnerships are:

“We are honored and excited to be selected for this prestigious national designation,” said Zach Pruitt, executive director of Northfield Healthy Community Initiative, the backbone organization for Northfield Promise. “The Accelerator Fund has the potential to help us collectively achieve significant outcomes for kids in our community.

We have been fortunate to work closely with Red Wing on the statewide Educational Partnerships Coalition for the past two years,” said Pruitt. “We were excited about the prospect of applying for this national opportunity together. Clearly, Northfield and Red Wing are much smaller cities than Seattle, Milwaukee, and Washington, DC. We believe that our commitment to collaboration and the strength of our local partnerships helped us to get selected in a highly competitive process.”

The Accelerator Fund was created to expedite partnership progress in improving common outcomes along StriveTogether’s cradle-to-career continuum, a nationally recognized collective impact approach known as the Theory of Action. As part of the fund, each community will receive StriveTogether strategic assistance and capacity-building activities, such as advanced coaching and support in continuous improvement methods, data use and results-based leadership.

Current investors and partners include the Annie E. Casey Foundation, The Ballmer Group, Draper Richards Kaplan Foundation, KnowledgeWorks Foundation, the Metlife Foundation, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Target and the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation, a philanthropic account administered by Vanguard Charitable.


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