Cradle to Career Giving Network

High-Impact Philanthropy
With the support and encouragement of Laura and Gary Lauder, Aspen Community Foundation created the Cradle to Career Giving Network in 2016. The Network is comprised of a select group of philanthropists who are interested in making a difference in the lives of children and families in the Aspen to Parachute region. Members of the Giving Network contribute $5,000 annually, which is matched by the Lauders, and have the opportunity to learn directly from experts how the cutting-edge strategy of Collective Impact can have a profound impact on positive youth development and our valley's future. The group participates in a series of meetings in which they learn about issues impacting our youth and how these issues are being addressed through the Cradle to Career Initiative. The culmination is a group decision on how to allocate the pool of funds within Cradle to Career goal areas. In 2019, the Giving Network raised $200,000.
2019-2020 Giving Network Members
Pam Alexander
Amy Margerum Berg
Gail and Al Engelberg
Laurel Gilbert and Bruce Etkin
Jaimie and David Field
Barbara Gold
Ramona Bruland and Michael Goldberg
Andi and Jim Gordon
Jane and Allen Grossman
Sally and Steve Hansen
Annie and Jerry Hosier

Donna Barranco Fisher and Bob Kammer
Laura and Gary Lauder
Melony and Adam Lewis
Marcie and Robert Musser
Esther and Craig Navias
Laurie Crown and Rick Ortega
Esther Pearlstone
Lynn Russell
Jeannie and John Seybold
Elisha and Jeff Zander

2019-2020 Investments

Early Childhood Education - All children ready for kindergarten
Recognizing that early childhood education is one of the best investments a society can make, the Giving Network chose to invest a majority of the pooled funds in the following strategies to help young children flourish and succeed.
Public Understanding and Will Building
A regional study to determine the viability for public funding for early childhood education. Research and polling showed strong support for an early childhood education ballot initiative. Completing the program design, building upon the strong support, engaging with leaders, influencers, and elected officials will inform what this ballot initiative will look like.

Increase Quality of Informal Family/Friends/Neighbor Care
Training in brain and child development, oral language. and early literacy skills, and the importance of social emotional learning. With the addition of a full-time staff member, the Early Childhood Network will oversee, champion, and lead the work in western Garfield County.

Mobile Intercultural Resource Alliance Support 
Funding to provide additional resources, education, and support to families  living in low-income neighborhoods in El Jebel. The MIRA bus will visit El Jebel more frequently to provide early childhood support and resources.

Behavioral Health Specialist 
Provide services to students, families, and teachers, preschool to first grade, in the Garfield County School District 16 (Parachute). This position will provide ongoing identification, support, and resources to have a healthier, more productive learning environment based on the individual needs of students, families, and teachers.

Postsecondary Education - All students ready for college and career
The Giving Network also chose to invest in helping high school students develop a postsecondary pathway that leads to economic independence and community involvement.
Career Expo
Connecting students to businesses throughout the Aspen-to-Parachute region. Funding will support a position that ensures the Expo can continue to grow and enhance already created partnerships with businesses.

Colorado Opportunity Scholarship Initiative
Funding for low-income students to continue their postsecondary education. These dollars are matched by the Colorado Department of Higher Education.

Career Connections
Funding to increase exposure to career exploration and pathways. YouthEntity will hire a coordinator to work with students in 6th through 12th grades, connecting them with job shadowing, internships, and apprenticeships.
For more information about the Giving Network, please contact Stephanie Gianneschi, Philanthropy Director.