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September 30, 2014 / Ciara Myers, Editor

Funding cuts threaten new infant mortality initiative

Even as the city announced a focus on a new five-year initiative to combat the infant mortality rate last week, federal funding for young mothers and infants in D.C. has been cut to the tune of $4 million. City officials are now contemplating ways to prevent a lapse in services following the announcement of budget cuts. (WaPo, 9/29)

Over two decades, the city received tens of millions of dollars in funding through the federal Healthy Start program. But that program recently changed its structure, dispensing with a long-standing preference for previous grantees and instituting a more competitive funding process.


The city’s infant-mortality rate — that is, the number of live-born children who die before their first birthday — is 7.4 deaths per 1,000 live births. The new initiative, known as “Stronger 2gether — One City 4 Healthier Babies,” aims to drive that rate below 5.0 by 2020. The national average is 6.1 deaths per 1,000 live births, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — well above that of many other industrialized nations.

WRAG | Congratulations are in order! WRAG president, Tamara Copeland, has been named as an honoree of Washington Business Journal‘s 2014 Women Who Mean Business award. The prestigious award honors the most influential businesswomen in the region from various industries who are trailblazers in their communities. Look out for the November 14th edition of the publication for a profile on how our president is making her mark!

 New York Times journalist, Nicholas Kristof, discusses how to be a high-impact donor and the struggle to make people care about causes far-away from home. You can listen to the discussion, or read a transcript. (WAMU, 9/29)

– Starting next week, a free massive online open course will be available through Stanford University called, “Giving 2.0.” The course is for individuals of all income levels to learn how to maximize their giving potential through various channels. Get some background on the philanthropist leading the effort here. (Chronicle, 9/29)

5 Factors for Success in Philanthropy’s Work with Cities (NPQ, 9/24)

– Though it has become a common buzzword in the world of affordable housing in the last several years, gentrification is nothing new. In the District, residents in an area of Georgetown that was once heavily populated by African Americans found themselves being pushed out of their homes as early as the 1920s. (WAMU, 9/26)

– Those shipping container apartments that are said to be a potential ecological and economical solution to housing are now up in Brookland. See how they turned out.(WaPo, 7/20 & WTOP, 9/29)

 Seven of the nearly 270 community colleges across the country selected to receive a total of $450 million in job training grants from Vice President Biden are in the Washington Region. (InTheCapital, 9/30)

– Takeovers of struggling charter schools offer families stability, and a culture clash (WaPo, 9/29)

Who doesn’t love an infographic? Here’s one about tracking and measuring your organization’s social media efforts.

– Ciara

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