The Opportunity Youth Incentive Fund was designed with adoption and scale in mind.
The goals of the Fund are two-fold:
- to build strong evidence of success for utilizing the collective impact community collaboration strategy to build and deepen pathways that achieve better outcomes in education and employment for Opportunity Youth
- to make the case for increased adoption of the collective impact and community collaboration strategy as an effective model for community change
To accomplish these goals, the Opportunity Youth Incentive Fund will demonstrate the following initial and intermediate progress toward outcomes:
- Make up to 21 grants to communities – with a 1:1 match requirement for implementation grants – to support strong existing community collaboratives/backbone organizations focused on building and deepening education and employment pathways for opportunity youth
- Design a learning agenda and implement a learning community across grantees
- Provide site specific training and technical assistance to grantees
- Engage in a rigorous 3rd party evaluation
- Generate and lift-up case studies of collective impact that are demonstrating positive outcomes for opportunity youth
- Develop a finance study to highlight strategies that leverage and/or repurpose public resources to sustain and scale effective reconnecting pathways for opportunity youth
- Produce white papers and other tools to inform the field and encourage adoption of the collective impact/community collaborative approach in other communities
- Create a communications strategy that leverages the Aspen Institute brand and engages key stakeholders, high-level leaders, and core constituencies
- Shape an advocacy agenda and policy priorities focused on local, state and national system alignment and change to generate better outcomes for opportunity youth
Collectively, the Opportunity Youth Incentive Fund will build evidence, share success, and promote the increased adoption of strategies that dramatically improve outcomes while providing communities with the knowledge and tools necessary for success.