Save the Children

save the children
Pictured left-to-right is Truist Customer Service Manager,
David Roose’s, two children: Isaiah and Gisandra

Washington, DC, the Nation’s Capital and the place we at Truist call our home, is not only known for its beautiful monuments, museums, and history, but also for its unique culture, accepting people, and its year-round activities. The District is one of the most populous cities in America and is only 68.3 square miles in size. Although the city lacks space, many families with children reside in DC. In fact, according to the 2012 US Census, 17.3% of the DC population is under the age of 18. Unfortunately, a staggering 110,000 people live below the poverty line, and this dramatically affects not only adults, but also their children (Huffington Post, 2011).

As a result of poverty in DC, many children face day to day problems that can restrict their ability to achieve a better lifestyle for themselves in the future. According to the international organization, Save the Children, 70% of DC kids are eligible for reduced-priced meals, 61% of DC 4th graders scored below basic reading levels of national assessments, and 21% of DC kids are obese. In response, Save the Children implemented programming in Washington, DC to help area children succeed. Beginning in 2011, these programs include: The Early Steps to School Success Program, The Literacy Program, The Healthy Choices Program, and The Resilient and Ready Communities Initiative.

The Early Steps to School Success Program was designed for children from birth to 5 years of age, who need help with language, social, and emotional development. This program equips parents with the skills and knowledge to successfully support their child’s growth and to develop strong home-school connections. The Literacy Program provides children ages 5 to 12 the tools they need to develop skills in literacy and grow as readers. The Healthy Choice Program, created for children ages 5 to 12, aims to educate children on health, as well as provide kids access to regular physical exercise. The Resilient and Ready Communities Initiative was designed for kids and teens, ranging from birth to 18 years of age. This campaign helps communities at risk of disaster meet new national standards and integrate best practices for supporting children’s safety and well-being through preparedness planning programs.

Although Save the Children’s DC programs started merely two years ago, they are already achieving great results. During the 2012 year, these programs served 294 children in the Nation’s Capital. 69% of these children showed significant reading improvement and 83% of 3-year-olds scored at or above the normal range of vocabulary acquisition. Not to mention, all 294 kids participated in at least 30 minutes of physical exercise per day and were introduced healthy snacking options. With the implementation of programs like these, Save the Children hopes to create immediate and lasting change for children.

Save the Children’s mission is to “inspire breakthroughs in the way the world treats children and to achieve immediate and lasting change in their lives.” As one of the leading independent organizations, they are highly recognized for their commitment to accountability, innovation, and collaboration. Save the Children assists with disaster response, poverty, hunger, illiteracy, and disease. Their goal is to help at least 74 million children a year.

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