Annie E. Casey Foundation

Annie E. Casey Foundation Logo

The Annie E. Casey Foundation is devoted to developing a brighter future for millions of children at risk of poor educational, economic, social and health outcomes. Their work focuses on strengthening families, building stronger communities and ensuring access to opportunity, because children need all three to succeed. They advance research and solutions to overcome the barriers to success, help communities demonstrate what works and influence decision makers to invest in strategies based on solid evidence.

Grantee Information
Federal Awards: 
$1.5 million over three years (2015-2017) for a total of $4.5 million
Focus Area: 
Youth Development
Geographic Focus: 
(NATIONAL) Up to 12 of 40 states: AL, AR, AZ, CA, CT, DE, FL, GA, HI, IN, IA, KS, KY, LA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MO, MS, MT, NC, NE, NH, NJ, NM, NV, NY, OH, OR, PA, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, VA, WA, WV, and WI
Collaborating Partners: 
Center for the Study of Social Policy; Jobs for the Future; MDRC

The Learn and Earn to Achieve Potential (LEAP) program will integrate portions of two existing interventions that support system-involved youth to connect to post-secondary education and employment:

  • The Jobs for America's Graduates (JAG) model, to prepare them for school and work; and
  • Jobs for the Future's Back on Track model, to provide postsecondary bridging with first-year postsecondary supports

Annie E. Casey Foundation’s SIF initiative, LEAP, will reach additional youth in transition to help them reengage with education and employment opportunities, advance towards postsecondary credentials and secure work experience and employment.  The adaptions will involve both a trauma-based and asset-based approach.  Each site selected will receive coaches knowledgeable in the pre-identified interventions to help with implement and scale programs across the nation.


Entities Receiving Social Innovation Fund Awards from Annie E. Casey Foundation

Alaska: Covenant House Alaska
Arizona: Jobs for Arizona's Graduates
California: Coalition for Responsible Community Development
California: South Bay Community Services
Maine: University of Southern Maine, Muskie School of Public Service
Michigan: Jobs for Michigan's Graduates (Berrien-Cass-Van Buren Workforce Development Board)
Minnesota: Project for Pride in Living, Inc. (PPL)
Nebraska: Nebraska Children and Families Foundation
New York: The Door


Covenant House Alaska

Anchorage, AK

Covenant House Alaska will use the Jobs for America’s Graduates out-of-school youth model to provide career mentoring and coaching and community-based learning experiences for system-involved youth in Anchorage and youth from rural areas who travel to Anchorage for access to support as they try to navigate life on their own (homeless) or transitioning from other child serving systems.


Jobs for Arizona's Graduates

Phoenix, AZ

Jobs for Arizona’s Graduates will partner with Youth On Their Own (YOTO, a dropout prevention program) to expand Jobs for America’s Graduates programming to reach out-of-school system-involved and homeless youth in Tucson and West Phoenix and surrounding areas.


Coalition for Responsible Community Development
Los Angeles, CA

The LA Opportunity Youth Collaborative, with Coalition for Responsible Community Development as the lead agency, will develop the Jobs for America’s Graduates model out-of-school and Jobs for the Future’s Back on Track postsecondary bridging and first year support models foster and crossover youth in South LA and East LA, home to a disproportionate number of foster youth who have not completed high school.

South Bay Community Services
Chula Vista, CA

South Bay Community Services will develop Back on Track postsecondary bridging and first year college support as part of its continuum of education and employment services for juvenile offenders and youth transitioning from foster care in San Diego County’s South Region, from National City to the Mexican border.


University of Southern Maine, Muskie School of Public Service

Portland, ME

The University of Southern Maine-Muskie School, in partnership with Jobs for Maine Graduates and Office of Child & Family Services, will use the Jobs for America’s Graduates and Back on Track models to provide high school career and college readiness, postsecondary bridging, and first year college support, with the goal of reaching all of the state’s transitioning foster youth within five years.


Jobs for Michigan's Graduates (Berrien-Cass-Van Buren Workforce Development Board)

Benton Harbor, MI

Jobs for Michigan Graduates will expand programming using its out-of-school youth model to serve youth in three locations in Detroit, Flint and Benton Harbor. Key partners include Michigan Youth Opportunities Initiative (partnership between DHHS and Jim Casey Youth Opportunities to serve foster care youth), Michigan Rehabilitation Services, the juvenile court system and law enforcement.


Project for Pride in Living, Inc. (PPL)

Minneapolis, MN

Project for Pride in Living and partners including the Minneapolis Public Schools will expand the Jobs for America’s Graduates (JAG) program’s career readiness model to serve youth involved in foster care and juvenile justice. Support will be delivered on-site by JAG specialists at seven alternative schools.


Nebraska Children and Families Foundation

Lincoln, NE

The Nebraska Children and Families Foundation LEAP initiative will develop new Back on Track programming as a way to establish a common operating framework for postsecondary bridging and first year college support for foster youth. The LEAP initiative will focus on foster youth in urban areas, Omaha and Lincoln. Primary postsecondary transition services will be delivered via key partners including The Hub and Central Plains Center for Services (Lincoln) and Avenue Scholars (Omaha) and supplemented by support from a network of partners including mental health providers, area workforce boards, vocational rehab services, funders who can provide tuition, living expenses and other supports, etc.

New York

The Door

New York, NY

The Door’s LEAP initiative will add strong postsecondary bridging and first year college support to its existing continuum of college access and workforce programming in order to better serve system-involved youth (Lower Manhattan and South Bronx sites serve approximately 1000 system-involved youth annually).

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