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Pay for Success Convening Highlights
In June, ICS welcomed 120 participants to its 2018 Pay for Success Convening of Early Childhood Advisors held in Charlotte, NC.  Hailing from the United States, Australia, and the United Kingdom, the event brought together nonprofit, foundation, policy, academic and corporate leaders for two days of learning and dialogue.  This fourth iteration of the Convening - hosted in Charlotte, where we held the first gathering in 2013 - reflected the evolution of Pay for Success, from a novel new concept to a broad call for outcome-based policy backed by innovative impact financing strategies.

Presentation  slides  are now available, as well as a gallery of the event.


ICS Director of Innovation and Inclusion Mary Garvey shared her reflections on the event and the important role PFS can play for improving child outcomes in a recent blog post: 

"There is a tribe of people that inhabits parts of Kenya and northern Tanzania.  For generations they have greeted one another with the saying: "And how are the children.'  The expected response is: 'The children are well.  Yes, all the children are well.'  Two things stand out to me about this greeting.  First, there is the inherent understanding that the well-being of children is reflective of how society is doing on a whole. Secondly, all (not some) children must be well in order for all to be well." 

Read the full blog here.

Conference attendees Russ Wood and Dale Renner  wrote a piece for Pro Bono Australia  on lessons learned at the event which carry over to this growing sector Down Under:

"We heard from an early intervention project successfully preventing at-risk kids from requiring costly special education services at school. We heard of the shift of $100 million of social service spending to an outcomes basis in the state of Rhode Island. We learned about a project that prevents hospitalisations of high risk asthma patients through allergen removal in the home - saving lives and money. These are some of the dozens of projects in operation now that are based around outcomes....While Social Impact Bonds may continue to provide value, there is also a need to develop a wider array of outcomes-based contracts. There is no question Australia can benefit from more focus on capability and ecosystem development around a broader outcomes-based social system."

Upcoming Events 

2018 Champions for Young Children Symposium
ICS is proud to be a sponsor of the 2018 Champions for Young Children Symposium  on August 3 in Columbia, South Carolina. This year's theme is  Understanding Trauma and Building Resilience
The Symposium aims to:
  • Increase awareness of the effect of trauma in young children
  • Provide participants with evidence-based strategies to respond to trauma and build resilience in young children
  • Give a platform for practitioners from multiple early childhood sectors to network and share ideas
We are pleased to share that ICS Senior Fellow  Janice Gruendel  will be a keynote speaker at the event, joined by  Charlene Russell-Tucker , Chief Operating Officer for the Connecticut State Department of Education. Janice will speak on "From Toxic Stress to Health, Hope and Resilience: What's in Your Backpack?"

Childhood, Unplugged
Save the date and join us September 20 at the Children's Museum of Denver for  Childhood, Unplugged

Attendees will reflect on the impacts of technology and experiential-based learning on child development, explore barriers to improve  equitable access, and identify low-cost, low-burden strategies to thoughtfully incorporate outdoor and experiential learning practices in formal and informal learning environments. 

Childhood, Unplugged is presented in partnership with

Registration opens August 1!

Team Updates

Staff Retreat

This week, ICS staff held a productive, two day retreat in Washington, DC.  Our theme, "it's a jungle out there" (we were meeting near the National Zoo), allowed us to dig into tactics and objectives related to our new Strategic Framework and shape our upcoming policy portfolio.   It was an intense, reinvigorating two days and we left energized to tackle the work before to improve child outcomes!

On Becoming Real: Breaking the Cycle of Intergenerational Poverty

In Washington, DC on July 17 ICS Senior Fellow Janice Gruendel joined Commissioner Rod Bremby of the Connecticut Department of Social Services in delivering the opening keynote at a conference of the Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems Collaborative Improvement and Innovation Network (ECCS CoIIN).  Hosted by the Human Resources Services Administration (HRSA) and the National Institute for Child Health Quality, this gathering brought together participants from across the nation.  Gruendel and Bremby's presentation, On Becoming Real: Breaking the Cycle of Intergenerational Poverty, set the stage for a robust discussion on moving the needles of child well-being.  You can learn more about the ECCS CoIIN and the multi-year collaborative effort  here .

Merl Code on Greenville: "An intent to grow"

We're pleased to share this great profile of ICS Board Member Merl Code of the law firm Ogletree Deakins in Greenville, featured in  T he Upstate Business Journal

"I watched my father intermingle with all kinds of folks. I watched the governor of South Carolina and senators all come to visit my dad. I sat in the room, and my daddy would make me introduce myself and ask them if they wanted anything to drink. I'd leave the room and they'd talk. Fifteen or 20 minutes after the governor leaves, a person down on their luck and having a hard time in life would stop by to see my daddy. He'd sit in the same place the governor sat, and I'd have to come out and introduce myself and ask them if they wanted something to drink. From that, I learned to value people." 

Women's Leadership Institute

Congratulations to ICS Special Projects Associate  Amanda McDougald Scott, a 2018 graduate of the Women's Leadership Institute of Furman University! Learn more about WLI:  "WLI provides an engaging educational forum for executives and senior managers from diverse backgrounds and disciplines in corporations, law, governmental agencies, educational institutions and nonprofit organizations. By working with one another, the goal of WLI is to enhance vital leadership skills and form a collaborative, lasting network of relationships."  

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