Kansas Head Start Association receives $21,000 grant from Kansas Health Foundation

December 19, 2013

CONTACT: Erick J. Vaughn Kansas Head Start Association evaughn@ksheadstart.org 785.865.3132

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Kansas Head Start Association receives $21,000 grant from Kansas Health Foundation

Lawrence, Kan. – Kansas Head Start Association has been awarded a $21,000 grant through the Kansas Health Foundation’s Recognition Grants program. This money will help support the Financial Literacy Project, which provides evidence-based financial education to Early Head Start and Head Start parents in Kansas. The project establishes strategic partnerships with local financial institutions to aid low-income families in their efforts to improve their health, well-being, and financial stability.

“Improving the health, well-being, and school readiness of children in poverty requires individual, family, and community engagement,” says Erick J. Vaughn, Executive Director of the Kansas Head Start Association. “Educating parents about money management, community resources, and effective family budgeting and savings goals supports parent resilience—a proven protective factor for healthy child development and well-being. Engaging community financial institutions as partners expands the support network for low income families and expands awareness of poverty in the community.”

Fifteen communities and 225 Early Head Start and Head Start families will be served with the financial literacy classes funded by the grant. At least 80 families are expected to complete the saving goal during the classes.

Recognition Grants expand the Kansas Health Foundation’s support to a broad range of health-related organizations throughout the state. The program is targeted for organizations and agencies proposing meaningful and charitable projects or initiatives that fit within the Foundation's mission of improving the health of all Kansans. In addition to supporting projects, the Foundation also seeks to support initiatives that focus on promoting policy, systems and environmental transformations that support health.

“Each year we are amazed at the incredible projects being done by organizations across Kansas,” said Steve Coen, president and CEO of the Kansas Health Foundation. “This grant program allows us to support these innovative and impactful community initiatives and recognize the groups and individuals making them a reality.”

This fall, the Kansas Health Foundation provided more than $900,000 through this program to help organizations accomplish 51 different projects intended to improve the health and wellness of Kansans. Using a competitive application process, the Foundation allocates up to $2 million each year for the Recognition Grants program. Application deadlines for the two cycles are March 15 and Sept. 15 each year. Any tax-exempt, nonprofit organization using the money for charitable purposes and proposing a project meeting the Foundation’s mission to improve the health of all Kansans is eligible.

For more information about this project or to learn how you can make a donation or volunteer, please visit http://www.ksheadstart.org or contact Erick Vaughn at 785.856.3132 or evaughn@ksheadstart.org.

About the Kansas Head Start Association The Kansas Head Start Association supports and strengthens Kansas early learning programs through advocacy, professional development, and leadership.

About the Kansas Health Foundation The Kansas Health Foundation is a private philanthropy based in Wichita, but statewide in its focus. Its mission is to improve the health of all Kansans. To learn more about the Foundation, please visit www.kansashealth.org.

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