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 2017, the Giving Network raised $280,000.
2017 Giving Network Members
Pam Alexander
Joan and Lawrence Altman
Jill and Paul Aschkenasy
Amy Margerum Berg
Terri and Tony Caine
Gail and Al Engelberg
Bruce Etkin
Jaimie and David Field
Erin and Jon Frankel
Julie and Martin Franklin
Barbara Gold
Ramona Bruland and Michael Goldberg
Andi and Jim Gordon
Jane and Allen Grossman

Sally and Steve Hansen
Jamie and Bush Helzberg
Diane and Bill Hunckler
Erica and Jeff Keswin
Laura and Gary Lauder
Melony and Adam Lewis
Gina and Jerry Murdock
Marcie and Robert Musser
Laurie Crown and Rick Ortega
Pamela Paresky
Esther Pearlstone
Catherine Anne Provine
Lynn Russell

2017 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

Progress to Date: Consultants have conducted in-depth interviews with key community leaders, focus groups, and regional polling, In addition to modeling various public financing options, recommendations for the next phase of work are expected soon. 

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.  

Progress to Date: 30 people were trained to begin to build the bridge between informal caregivers and professionals who can share information, tools, and resources that help promote positive child development.

Increase Licensed Family Child Care - funding for family child care providers to comply with state licensing requirements

Progress to Date: Initially, three providers have sought support to become licensed. The opportunity will continue in 2018.

Child Care Subsidies for Families - tuition assistance for four-year-old children to help them be prepared for kindergarten

Progress to Date: 63 children have been served in three school districts from Basalt to Parachute.

Teachers and Caregiver Training - scholarships for early childhood teachers to support professional development and certification and degree completion

Progress to Date: 15 early childhood teachers have received scholarships.
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.
Expand Internships/Job Shadowing - opportunities for students to discover interests and get real-world experiences

Progress to Date: The targeted high school has launched a dual track counseling/internship program to reach both traditional, engaged students
as well as those who have either dropped out or are at-risk of dropping out.

Increase Scholarship Dollars - funding for low-income students to attend
two- or four-year colleges or universities or to pursue certificates or technical training

Progress to Date:  30 students from Basalt to Parachute received scholarships.
For more information about the Giving Network, please contact Stefanie Davis, Philanthropy and Partnership Director.