Blog Archives

Crossing Over: New Connected Youth Initiative GOALS Program Helps Create a Bridge Between Youth and Supports

Imagine having experienced the foster care system. Maybe you connected with a family. Maybe you didn’t, and now you’re alone. You’re ready to live your best life, but are so focused on surviving, you’ve yet to approach thriving. The Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Labor, CYI, Central Plains Center for Services and The Sherwood Foundation have teamed up to create Granting Opportunities for Achievement and Lifelong Success (GOALS). This initiative supports young adults who are transitioning from extended foster care during and throughout the pandemic. Read more.

Imagine having experienced the foster care system. Maybe you connected with a family. Maybe you didn’t, and now you’re alone. You’re ready to live your best life, but are so focused on surviving, you’ve yet to approach thriving.

The Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Labor, CYI, Central Plains Center for Services and The Sherwood Foundation have teamed up to create Granting Opportunities for Achievement and Lifelong Success (GOALS). This initiative supports young adults who are transitioning from extended foster care during and throughout the pandemic. Read more.

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Posted in News and Events, Systems, Teen/Early Adulthood

Brainchildren: McCook Communities for Kids’ Meeting-of-the-Minds Increases Childcare and Community

When childcare’s future looks cloudy, McCook’s Communities for Kids brainstorms and creates a silver lining by collecting families’ responses through an in-depth survey and creating a childcare incentives program! Read about how the team forged quality care incentives to improve the presence of their community’s childcare programs and providers.

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Posted in Early Childhood, News and Events

Good Things Come in Threes: Communities for Kids and Partners Enact Three-Phase Approach for Early Childhood Programs and Providers

Columbus' Communities for Kids, the Community and Family Partnership, Columbus Public Schools, and other partners stand at attention, ready to hand out essential items.

Communities for Kids, one of Nebraska Children’s Early Childhood initiatives, has been hard at work. As one of our programs designed to support children during their early years and their caregivers, we believe that change begins at the community level – and it did in Columbus, Nebraska. Read more about Columbus’ three-phase approach to assisting their local childcare providers.

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Posted in Early Childhood, News and Events

Zeny: A Young Woman with an Incredible Work Ethic, Meets Her Goals and Says, “I Can’t Wait to Give Back One Day”

When Zeny and her husband moved from the small town of Hastings, Nebraska to Lincoln, she had to begin all over again. For anyone who has encountered not only a new chapter in life, but a new library, that transition can be scary, exciting, and abrupt. One CYI component that helped Zeny along her way was Opportunity Passport™, which is implemented in Lincoln by Community Action Partnership of Lancaster and Saunders County. Read more about Zeny's accomplishments.

When Zeny and her husband moved from the small town of Hastings, Nebraska to Lincoln, she had to begin all over again. For anyone who has encountered not only a new chapter in life, but a new library, that transition can be scary, exciting, and abrupt. One CYI component that helped Zeny along her way was Opportunity Passport™, which is implemented in Lincoln by Community Action Partnership of Lancaster and Saunders County. Read more about Zeny’s accomplishments.

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Posted in News and Events, Systems, Teen/Early Adulthood

Virusbusters: Lisa Topf Talks about Early Care Provider’s Struggles at the Frontlines of COVID-19

We are grateful to Lisa, a Sioux City, Nebraska early care specialist, for sharing her experience at Cubby Care Campus, an early childhood center that’s situated in a growing hotbed of COVID-19, or what Lisa calls The Villain Virus. From here on, Lisa will discuss her experience, in her own words.

We are grateful to Lisa, a Sioux City, Nebraska early care specialist, for sharing her experience at Cubby Care Campus, an early childhood center that’s situated in a growing hotbed of COVID-19, or what Lisa calls The Villain Virus. From here on, Lisa will discuss her experience, in her own words.

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Posted in Early Childhood, News and Events

CARES Act Allocates Funds to Childcare and Educational Initiatives

Early this week, the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) announced that $20M in federal dollars will go toward restoring our state’s childcare foundation in addition to other educational resources for children. Following passage of the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES) earlier in March, this funding became available with a $3.5B appropriation to the Child Care Development Fund (CCDF). Read more about how these funds will be approximately allocated.

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Posted in Early Childhood, News and Events

Nebraska Children Teams Up with Matt Talbot Kitchen and Partners to Provide Housing for Homeless

We are excited to be part of some incredible community-based efforts, particularly when we teamed up with Matt Talbot Kitchen & Outreach and partners' efforts to provide housing for the homeless.

We are excited to be part of some incredible community-based efforts, particularly Matt Talbot Kitchen & Outreach’s recent ones to provide housing for the homeless. Throughout these last few months, we can’t deny the pandemic’s gravity or community accomplishments to help families thrive. As the saying goes, if it

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Posted in News and Events

Connected Youth Initiative: Kevin, a Motivated Young Man, Arrives at Success, Thanks to His Determination and a Little Help from Opportunity Passport

Kevin has been a participant in Opportunity Passport™ for over three years. He speaks three languages, plans to attend college, continues to demonstrate financial self-sufficiency. Given these skills, he’s already created a solid foundation but has built on these existing talents. Read more to see how he accomplished his goals!

Resources for Unconnected Youth: Connected Youth Initiative Grants Hope   During an unsettling time, our communities and youth with foster care experience matter. Despite these challenges, positive changes are happening every day both here at Nebraska Children and Families Foundation and in the communities in which we work.   We’ve seen

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Posted in News and Events, Systems, Teen/Early Adulthood

Project Everlast Omaha Launches Mobile Pantries to Ensure Youth Have Access to Food and Necessities

Long before the pandemic, Connected Youth Initiative’s Project Everlast Omaha, its partners, and the community has offered programs to assist unconnected youth. The term "unconnected youth" refers to young people between the ages of 14-25 years of age who have experienced the foster care system, juvenile justice system and/or probation, homelessness, or human trafficking. Find out more about Project Everlast Omaha's efforts to support unconnected youth!

Long before the pandemic, Connected Youth Initiative’s Project Everlast Omaha, its partners, and the community has offered programs to assist unconnected youth. The term “unconnected youth” refers to young people between the ages of 14-25 years of age who have experienced the foster care system, juvenile justice system and/or probation, homelessness, or human trafficking. Find out more about Project Everlast Omaha’s efforts to support unconnected youth!

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Posted in Middle Childhood, News and Events, Systems, Teen/Early Adulthood

When Playgrounds are off Limits, Early Care Providers Get Creative: Krystal Holmes Reveals Educational Activities for Toddlers During COVID-19

Read more about Falls City, NE childcare provider, Krystal Holmes, who became creative in engaging her toddlers. From creating mini-storm clouds to turning a toy exercise into a real-live bug-hunt, Krystal shares both the difficulties that have affected her childcare and the learning experiences she has created as a result.

COVID-19. A few months before it was a name that occasionally echoed throughout media outlets, a virus from far, far away, a distant worry that was initially, amid all of hustle and bustle of everyday life, easy to brush aside.  

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Posted in Early Childhood, News and Events
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