2017: The Casey Foundation’s Year in Review
It’s been another inspiring — and productive — year.
As the year comes to a close, we feel it’s important to reflect on what we and our partners have accomplished to advance our mission to build a brighter future for children, families and communities in the United States. Over the past year, we have worked to build that bright future side by side with advocates, leaders, researchers, residents — and many of you.
While it’s impossible to note every highlight of 2017, we wanted to share some bright spots and progress.
In 2017, we saw meaningful gains for kids.
- Fewer U.S. kids live in poverty, and more high school students are graduating on time. The nation’s teen birth rate dipped to an all-time low, and children’s health care coverage hit a record high, with 96% of kids insured.
- Our KIDS COUNT® Network advocated for state policies that benefited nearly 19 million children and increased or maintained investments to bolster their well-being.
- States made strides in creating more humane juvenile justice systems, ending their practice of automatically charging 16- and 17-year-olds as adults and eliminating life-without-parole sentences for youth.
Together, we created more opportunities for children and youth.
- As a member of the Baltimore Summer Funding Collaborative, we helped provide about 12,000 children and youths in Baltimore with summer learning and job opportunities.
- We grew our Opportunity Passport™ program, enabling more than 3,800 participants — young people who have been in foster care — to save for their future.
- Our Learn and Earn to Achieve Potential initiative, which completed its first full year of implementation, enrolled more than 1,200 young people in job-training or postsecondary education programs.
Together, we supported transforming public systems that serve kids.
- We celebrated the 25th anniversary of our Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative® — and progress in states reducing juvenile incarceration, such as Virginia, which closed one of its two remaining youth prisons.
- We joined several partners in launching the Children Need Amazing Parents campaign, or CHAMPS, which promotes quality foster parenting.
- Building on our commitment to ensure children are raised in families, we helped two states and one Ohio county cut the number of kids living in group homes or institutions by more than 50%.
Together, we worked to strengthen communities for children.
- We began a new initiative to reduce debt in communities of color in the South and help close the racial wealth gap.
- Working with local developers, we continued to steadily increase homeownership in Atlanta’s Pittsburgh neighborhood.
- We supported the ongoing development of East Baltimore, which included new housing, a playground and a recently opened hotel.
Together, we held true to our commitment to promote evidence-based, data-driven decision making and leadership.
- Through Results Count™, we helped dozens of local and national leaders make significant progress in improving the lives of kids and families.
- We released our second Race for Results report, which examines the challenges facing kids in immigrant families and children of color.
- We launched Steps to Success to focus on effectively implementing evidence-based programs.
- We published our 28th KIDS COUNT Data Book, highlighting gains in the economic well-being and health of children across the nation.
These achievements are rooted in powerful partnerships that we’ve forged across the nation. They represent progress we’ve made in great company — at the local, state and federal levels.
To everyone who joins us in our relentless pursuit of results for kids: Thank you. Together, we are making a meaningful difference, and we look forward to maintaining this momentum — and building an even brighter future for all of America’s children and families — in the new year.
President and Chief Executive Officer
The Annie E. Casey Foundation