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Whether we live in rural towns, big cities, or growing suburbs, the arts matter to all of us.
The arts spark discussion, raise questions, feed our imaginations, and link us to one another. Watercolor classes. Broadway musicals. Knitting groups. Dance performances. Storefront studios. Teen-painted murals. Choral groups. Outdoor sculpture. Battles-of-the-bands. Photos on coffee shop walls. Repertory theater. Cello solos. Paint-your-own-pottery places. It is all art, and it all matters in ways we seldom acknowledge.
The McKnight Foundation's conviction that the arts matter has always inspired our giving. That conviction also has driven us to find ways to highlight the arts and the nourishment they provide. This report is one such effort. A New Angle explores a growing commitment to the arts in the Twin Cities' suburbs. The report covers new ground by detailing the history, status, and direction of suburban arts activity.
We live in a time of continuous change. Regions with the ability to understand, anticipate and prepare for alternative future scenarios are rewarded in the New Economy. Strategic actions will improve the prospect for the Twin Cities to be globally competitive in the New Economy. The purpose of this paper is to ask the right questions and engage the right people in a common understanding of how to improve the likelihood for impact and sustained change. As initial steps in a process of strategy-making our region's leaders need to review assessments of the region, consider opportunities, choose priorities, and define roles and responsibilities for action.
This case study series is part of a commitment by Living Cities, The McKnight Foundation, and PLCP to create and share new knowledge about neighborhood and urban revitalization. Payne-Lake Community Partners (PLCP) is the name of the Pilot Cities Initiative in Minneapolis and St. Paul. Its focus is two of the Twin Cities' most historic commercial and residential corridors: Payne Avenue in St. Paul and Lake Street in Minneapolis. New and established communities are bringing fresh energy and creating exciting opportunities for shared wealth and prosperity in corridor neighborhoods that will be long-term social, economic, and cultural anchors. PLCP's agenda to connect people and place is to: Invest in the entrepreneurial energy of new immigrants and communities of colorAccelerate the revitalization of two commercial corridorsExpand the corridor markets into surrounding neighborhoods and the regional economy
Welfare reform efforts and significant caseload declines have resulted in a commonly held belief that those remaining on welfare face multiple barriers to employment, or are in some way "hard-to-serve." Clients with complex barriers to employment, disabilities, or medical conditions, are often grouped under this broad heading. One of the most significant challenges facing states and localities related to serving the hard-to-serve population is identifying the specific conditions and disabilities clients have that may be a barrier to finding and maintaining employment.
In 1999, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services contracted with the Urban Institute to conduct a Study of Screening and Assessment in TANF/Welfare-to-Work (WtW). The first phase of the study involved a review of the issues and challenges faced by TANF agencies and their partners in developing strategies and selecting instruments to identify substance abuse and mental health problems, learning disabilities, and domestic violence situations among TANF clients. The issues and challenges identified through that review are presented in Ten Important Questions TANF Agencies and Their Partners Should Consider (hereafter referred to as Ten Important Questions). The second phase of the study involved case studies of a limited number of localities to further explore how TANF agencies and their partners responded to the issues and challenges identified during phase one. The findings from the case studies are presented in this report.
Findings are based on discussions held between November 2000 and February 2001 with TANF agency staff and staff of key partner agencies in six localities: Montgomery County, KS, Owensboro, KY, Minneapolis, MN (the IRIS Program), Las Vegas, NV, Arlington, VA, and Kent, WA.
Charles F. Kettering Foundation;
Between 2007 and 2009, more than 3,000 citizens met with their neighbors in community centers, classrooms, churches, and libraries throughout the United States to talk about the issue known as the achievement gap. Participants in the forums discussed three possible options for closing the gap: raising expectations; providing more funding for struggling schools; and addressing root causes, such as poverty and poor health. As they deliberated, the citizens learned a great deal -- about their schools and their neighborhoods, about the persistence of subtle racial inequities, about the lives of young people, and about how these factors interact to support or prevent learning. Attitudes about teaching and parenting were questioned and reassessed. The experience of immigrant families, shrouded by language and culture, was brought into focus.
These and other findings are the subjects of this Kettering Foundation report. In the end, the people who participated in forums realized that schools cannot shoulder the entire task of educating the next generation, that the quality of education cannot be measured by test scores alone, and that success for all our children requires something more from all of us.
Annie E. Casey Foundation;
This report tells how four tax-preparation programs are breaking the mold and tackling the world of health care enrollment. Readers will learn the challenges and opportunities associated with such a move, which has the potential to help millions of low-income Americans take a critical first step toward a healthier future.
Center for Neighborhood Technology;
This report examines the impacts of transportation spending on households in the 28 metro areas for which the federal government collects expenditure data and of rising gas prices on both households and regional economies. It finds that households in regions that have invested in public transportation reap financial benefits from having access to affordable mobility options, even as gas prices rise, and that regions with public transit are losing less per household from the increase in gas prices than those without transit options.
Center for Neighborhood Technology;
This brief describes a new information tool developed by the Urban Markets Initiative to quantify, for the first time, the impact of transportation costs on the affordability of housing choices. This brief explains the background, creation, and purpose of this new tool. The first section provides a project overview and a short summary of the method used to create the Affordability Index. The next section highlights the results from testing the index in a seven-county area in and around Minneapolis-St. Paul, MN. To demonstrate the usefulness of this tool at a neighborhood level, the third section projects the effect of transportation and housing choices on three hypothetical low- and moderate-income families in each of four different neighborhoods in the Twin Cities. The brief concludes with suggested policy recommendations and applications of the new tool for various actors in the housing market, and for regulators, planners, and funders in the transportation and land use arenas at all levels of government. The Housing and Transportation Affordability Index is a groundbreaking innovation because it prices the trade-offs that households make between housing and transportation costs and the savings that derive from living in communities that are near shopping, schools, and work, and that boast a transit-rich environment. Built using data sets that are available for every transit-served community in the nation, the tool can be applied in neighborhoods in more than 42 cities in the United States. It provides consumers, policymakers, lenders, and investors with the information needed to make better decisions about which neighborhoods are truly affordable, and illuminate the implications of their policy and investment choices.
Children of immigrants are the fastest growing child population in the United States. More than 20 percent of children under age six have immigrant parents; approximately 93 percent of these children are American citizens.Of the children who are non-citizens, two-thirds will grow up to become citizens, playing a critical role in our nation's future.
The Great Recession has taken a significant toll on America's children. In 2010, 25 percent of children under age six were living in poverty, up from 21 percent in 2007.
America's Promise is a pioneering initiative that seeks to address overall youth development by creating community-wide programming based on proven practices necessary for a successful childhood and adolescence. A few examples of these evidence-based program components include community service, mentoring and developing marketable skills. This brief report presents P/PV's preliminary analysis of how the effort took root in three Communities of Promise: Charlotte, North Carolina; Minneapolis, Minnesota; and San Francisco, California. It explores the successes, challenges and opportunities that have resulted from America's Promise.
Wilder Research Center;
Provides a snapshot of the current status of African-American babies (whose parents were born in the U.S.) relative to other babies in St. Paul and Minneapolis. When data on African-American babies are not available, data on all black babies (including children of African immigrants) are presented.