2Gen Toolbox

Ascend is pleased to offer these resources to the growing two-generation field. We kindly request that you attribute Ascend’s work by citing the tool referenced. Please email ascend.info@aspeninstitute.org with any questions. Thank you!

State 2Gen Model: Maryland as a Case Study for Policymakers

This case study captures Maryland’s 2Gen approach from community innovation to statewide policy adoption. It lifts up local strategies such as common intake practices, creative partnerships with community colleges, supportive housing, workforce development, and Kinship Navigators (supporting family caregivers for children whose parents are temporarily or permanently unable to fulfill their parenting obligations) serving as socio-economic mobility coaches. At the same time, the need to address the cliff-effect (a steep loss in public benefits due to often modest increases in income from employment) now permeates public sector policymaking and collaboration across state agencies.

2Gen Platforms for Scale: Whole-Family Approaches Rooted in Community with National Reach

This report captures insights and lessons of the pioneering practitioners leading Community Action Agencies, women’s funds, community colleges, Head Start programs, and workforce development boards.

Making Tomorrow Better Together: Process Outcomes and Measures for 2Gen Organizational Change

The purpose of this guidebook is to help organization and agency leaders set goals and develop measures to track their progress and achievement of 2Gen change. The introduction begins with definitions of key terms used throughout the guidebook, then provides a brief history of the 2Gen approach and describes lessons learned that inform today’s “2Gen 2.0” efforts. It continues with discussions of the 2Gen continuum of policy and systems change, the role of organizational change in achieving parent and child outcomes, and stages of organizational collaboration.

Building Strong Client Relationships: The Garrett County Community Action Committee Two-Generation Approach Begins with a Strong, Whole-Family Intake Process

For human services work, first impressions often begin with client intake. Intake processes give organizations an opportunity to start their interactions with families with a two-generation (2Gen) approach. Garret County Community Action Committee (GCCAC), a leading 2Gen organization in rural western Maryland, has designed its intake process to ensure a 2Gen approach from the very beginning of its partnership with families.

Two-Generation Approach to Leveraging TANF: DC as a Case Study for Policymakers

This brief, based on research and a series of interviews, discusses the history, development, successes, and remaining challenges of the District’s 2Gen poverty alleviation approach for families. It also addresses the continuing development of DC’s work, which positions the city to extend the 2Gen framework to families experiencing homelessness, as well. In the words of Councilmember Nadeau, “The vision for the 2Gen TANF approach is anchored in building a system of care that is responsive to the needs of families.”

Principles for Engaging and Centering Parent Voice

Over the last decade, Ascend has worked with and learned from more than 50 parents across the country. Our learnings have demonstrated the importance of intentionality when lifting and centering parent perspectives, as well as connecting with parents themselves to gain their expertise and knowledge. From this journey, we developed a set of principles intended to guide interactions with parents and create the best possible conditions to work with parents and center their voices in 2Gen programs, policies, systems, and research.