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About Voices for Georgia Library Association 5/10/12


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About Voices for Georgia Library Association 5/10/12

  1. 1. About Voices for Georgia’s ChildrenA Nonprofit Child Policy & Advocacy Organization Polly McKinney Advocacy Director 10 May 2012
  2. 2. Who We Are Katie Pat Dante Monique Kisha Polly Jessica JuliaDevelopment Executive Health Office Early Advocacy Communic. Just GA Director Director Policy Manager Childhood Director Manager Coordinator 1
  3. 3. Who We Are• Established in 2003 as a statewide nonprofit child policy and advocacy organization• Vision: To create a Georgia where children are safe, healthy, educated, employable, and connected to their family and community• Mission: To be a powerful, unifying voice for a public agenda that ensures the well being of all of Georgia’s children 2
  4. 4. Who We Are• An independent nonpartisan organization affiliated with Voices for America’s Children• The only policy and advocacy organization in Georgia dedicated to overall child well being, not just one specific issue (e.g. education) 3
  5. 5. Who We Are• A convener of organizations and individuals around key child issues• Lead several collaborative advocacy groups made up of organizations and individuals: 4
  6. 6. Stats on Georgia’s Kids– 1 in 4 live at or below FPL– Georgia’s high school grad rate = 67%– 61% of low-income families have no reading material suitable for a child– 29% of 4th graders scored at or above proficient (2009) on NAEP reading test 5
  7. 7. Stats on Georgia’s Kids– 60% committed to DJJ are locked up for nonviolent offenses– Nearly 25% aging out of foster care end up homeless– 38% of nonviolent children detained in juvenile jails are locked up for technical violations and status offenses 6
  8. 8. Stats on Georgia’s Kids– 9.1% of babies born have low birth weight– 23.6% are not immunized– 12% have no insurance coverage– Georgia ranks #2 in U.S. in childhood obesity 7
  9. 9. Goals for Voices• Move the dial for kids – Have a Presence (with a capital “P”), so that kids are ever-present – Maintain good information – Maintain good and diverse relationships – Be effective 8
  10. 10. What We Do• Created a comprehensive policy agenda for Georgia’s children that drives our work – Three-pronged agenda: Issues related to Early Childhood (Birth to Age 5), Child Health and Transitioning Youth 9
  11. 11. What We Do• Advocacy work takes many forms: – Community outreach and events – Polling, publication s and research – Media campaigning – Direct advocacy and lobbying 10
  12. 12. Impact: Community Events• Host a variety of “issues awareness” events for elected officials, agency heads, organizational and individual advocates, the media and the public Receptions to celebrate Gov. Deal’s Leadership Team for Childrenand the new Georgia Dept. of Public Health. Gov. and First Lady attended both events. Attendees also included legislators, agency heads and advocates. 11
  13. 13. Impact: Community Events Annual Children’s Day at the Capitol with 24 partners (old and new) to inform legislators and the public about issues that impact Georgia’s kids.Annual Georgia Pre-K Week with Pete the Cat to raise awareness of Georgia’s Pre-K. In 2011, First Lady, DECAL Comr. and 108legislators read to a classroom in their district. 12
  14. 14. Impact: Publications & Research Early Childhood Child Health Transitioning YouthCOMPOUNDING INTEREST Why ZERO TO FIVE is an investment worth making 13
  15. 15. Impact: Policy & Legislation• Lobby State Legislation – Annual Agenda• Lobby Federal Legislation• Regulatory Advocacy – Child serving agencies• Community Outreach 14
  16. 16. How You Can Help• New website - - is a great resource for information seekers. Visit our site to: – Join our email list – Connect with us on social media – Respond to action alerts – Browse our events calendar – Search our publications and research archive – Find contact information for your elected officials – Track bills that impact Georgia’s children – Donate to help sustain our advocacy efforts 15
  17. 17. Online ( 16
  18. 18. Thank You!For more information: Polly McKinneypmckinney@georgiavoices.orgOr visit: