United Agenda for Children

Foundation initiatives focused on children and youth have been instrumental in leveraging broad support for programs that benefit young people.

Seeking ways to raise the profile of children’s issues, create a community vision concerning these issues and also explore a new decision-making model for the community, the Foundation collaborated with the Lee Institute to create a United Agenda for Children town hall meeting in 2004.

The Foundation funded a portion of the town hall meeting through its discretionary grant program and also assisted in designing and raising additional money for the event. The goal of the meeting was to develop a community-wide consensus on service priorities for children in Mecklenburg County.

More than 1,000 people attended the meeting committing to the future safety, health and education of all Mecklenburg County children. From this unprecedented gathering, 14 priorities (listed below) were identified and a coalition of citizens, civic leaders, corporations, public entities and community agencies united in ensuring a positive future for all Mecklenburg County youth.
  
The Charlotte Mecklenburg Community Foundation (an affiliate of Foundation For The Carolinas) awards grants to nonprofit organizations that address priorities established by the United Agenda for Children.


Next Steps
In an effort to continue the momentum of the United Agenda for Children (which concluded its work in 2006), the Charlotte Mecklenburg Community Foundation and other funders have underwritten a task force comprised of key stakeholders. The task force is charged with studying potential models and community capacity for sustaining an entity that can serve as a central clearinghouse for children’s issues. 


The United Agenda for Children Priorities:

Health

  • Increase school resources for health-care services, especially the employment of school nurses
  • Provide health-care services at home, school and day care facilities.
  • Increase health programs in schools
  • Implement universal health care
  • Coordinate services among providers, nonprofit agencies and faith-based organizations

Safety

  • Teach parenting skills and hold parents accountable for their child’s safety
  • Increase after-school and out-of-school activities
  • Improve the quality, quantity and accessibility of child care and day care
  • Increase employer support for child care, school visits and mentoring

Education

  • Require higher standards and provide better pay for teachers and teaching assistants
  • Expand and improve facilities including smaller classrooms and better student-teacher ratios
  • Improve communication between parents and schools
  • Increase the number of mentoring programs for students
  • Expand Bright Beginnings and take it to community sites

United Agenda Coalition Partners:


A Child’s Place

Alexander Youth Network

Carolinas Medical Center

Charlotte Chamber

Charlotte Chapter of Links Inc.

Child Care Resources Inc.

Children & Family Services Center

The Children’s Law Center

City of Charlotte

Communities in Schools

Community Building Initiative

Community Link

Council for Children

The Crown Jewels of Links Inc.

Families Leading Advocacy for Mecklenburg Education

The Family Center

Findley Davies

Guardian Ad Litem Program

The Junior League of Charlotte Inc.

Latin American Coalition

Legal Services of Southern Piedmont Inc.

Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation

Mecklenburg County Area Mental Health Authority

Mecklenburg County Department of Social Services

Mecklenburg County Sheriff’s Office

Public Library of Charlotte & Mecklenburg County

Partners in Out-of-School Time

Smart Start of Mecklenburg County

Teen Health Connection

Thompson Children’s Home

Time Out Youth

UNC Charlotte

United Family Services

Wachovia