Why This Matters
Gathering Policy Solutions for Kids (GPS4Kids) is a collective impact initiative aimed at improving outcomes for children and families in Westchester County regardless of race or zip code. Collective impact is a tool to bring large-scale social change and build a shared agenda. The GPS4Kids initiative is important because:
- In Westchester, a child’s ability to thrive is impacted by their race, gender and zip code.
- There is an opportunity to unite disparate efforts to address children’s needs in the county.
- Westchester Children’s Association is at the forefront of data-driven advocacy to engage and mobilize others.
The Issue (Explanation and Background)
GPS4Kids formed in 2015 with the purpose of:
- Taking WCA’s advocacy to the next level by merging our strengths in communication and data to build a wider net.
- Engaging key partners and partnerships throughout the County.
- Fusing first-person accounts and stories with our data expertise to tell the quantitative and the qualitative aspects of the story.
Currently we are engaging with multiple stakeholders, amplifying communication efforts, and promoting shared data measurements to ensure all children thrive regardless of race or zip code.
Phase I is focused on keeping children in positive learning environments, as reflected in the Baseline Report.
- 2018 Baseline Report – Access to reliable, recent and community-specific data is integral to the success of our advocacy work and the work of countless direct service partners. Our baseline report offers a look at six indicators:
- Pre-K Enrollment
- Disconnected Youth
- Chronic Absence
- Out of School Suspensions
- Number of High School Guidance Counselors
- Graduation Rates
- Podcast – Ground Truthing refers to the practice of relying on direct observations and analysis. Through our new podcast, we will be ground truthing the best policies and practices for children and families in Westchester by speaking to direct service providers, youth leaders, business owners, and more. Our hope is that we uncover the best solutions from the people and places who are most affected by policies.
- Connecting with partners– As we aim to uncover bright spots in the County, community partnerships are key. We will focus on the My Brother’s Keeper, United Way, and Lower Hudson Valley Perinatal Network initiatives as a starting point.
How to get involved
- Read our 2018 GPS4Kids Baseline Report
- Listen and subscribe to the Ground Truthing Podcast
- Join a working group (Strategic Action Planning, Communications & Community Development, and Data & Measurement) by emailing Erica L. Ayala
- Follow the conversation on social media with #gps4kids
- Subscribe to the GPS4Kids Newsletter, On the Road with GPS4Kids, by emailing Erica L. Ayala
- Note to Denise: look into creating gps newsletter sign up page on salsa
- Support our work
For more information
- 2018 GPS4Kids Baseline Report
- History of GPS4Kids