Blog

Smart Starts for Children and Families


Building Upon Early Learning Innovations On May 13-14, Ascend at the Aspen Institute convened a diverse circle of leaders for a series of conversations that highlight emerging themes for bold advances in the field of early childhood development. The forum includes insights from historians, experts in early care and education, practitioners, parents, policymakers, and philanthropists…

Ascend’s Salute to Mothers


As Mother’s Day 2015 approaches, Ascend salutes mothers across the country and says ‘thank you’ for all they do for their families. In honor of our own mothers, we recount below some of our earliest memories of school, values, and family. These are our stories. Please share one of yours! Veronica McLaughlin I am the…

Outcomes for Two Generations, Together


On March 2nd I had the pleasure of joining Ascend Network partners from around the country for a conversation about two-generation outcomes.* Even within a single program, identifying which outcomes to measure and how to measure them can be challenging, and further challenges emerge when the conversation includes stakeholders from a range of programs across…

Recent Poll Underlies the Significance of a Healthy Start in Life


Recent Poll Underlies the Significance of a Healthy Start in Life Health and well-being are core components of the two-generation approach to help low-income families reach educational success and economic security. There are many social determinants of health that impact the economic state of families, and once recognized, can be addressed through policies, practice, and…

Finding Fatherhood: New Hope for Families in Colorado


“Finding Fatherhood: New Hope for Families in Colorado,” a documentary film directed by Ascend Fellow Steve Liss and commissioned by Ascend Fellow Reggie Bicha (Executive Director, Colorado Department of Human Services), explores the human stories behind innovative programs in Colorado that offer support to fathers who have lost touch with their children, in part due…

5 things we’re excited about in impact investing


The Aspen Institute recently co-hosted the impactDEALS Forum with i2 Capital Group, an impact investing advisory firm based in the Washington, DC area. The event brought together investors and entrepreneurs to discuss how impact investing is delivering improved social and environmental outcomes in the education, health, environmental, and conservation finance sectors. Here at the Aspen…