Kindergarten ready education is of great importance here at Lift a Life Foundation and even more important in the lives of every Pre-K age child. Research shows that success in school begins before the child ever steps foot in the classroom. If a child is prepared in Kindergarten they are less likely to fall behind.
At Lift a Life Foundation we make investments to support high quality care and early learning centers for children before they start kindergarten. We do this because the evidence is clear: when young children have healthy and enriching experiences, along with high-quality instruction, they are more likely to be ready for school and to transition successfully into kindergarten and beyond.
Research proves that early learning is one of the best investments we can make — for our children, for our communities, and for the overall economic well-being of our country. This graphic from The White House gives even more evidence.
There is still a lot of work to be done to ensure that children are no longer at-risk, but with strong partnerships and commitment from leaders and parents all children truly can be kindergarten ready!
Last night an amazing group of early childhood educators were honored for their efforts in working with young children across Louisville and Southern Indiana within the 7 centers of The Excellence Academy.
The Excellence Academy was established in 2011 and guides and rewards preschool teachers who are working hard to grow high quality curriculum in classrooms throughout the region. As teachers make changes to their classrooms and consistently demonstrate new skills in their teaching methods, they progress through the Academy.
The goal of this early childhood care is to improve the quality of care in low-income area day cares, and ultimately help these children prepare for kindergarten. 35% of children typically enter kindergarten prepared, only 20% are prepared in the neighborhoods that these teachers are now able to reach. With the effectiveness of these teachers in the Academy more and more children are entering kindergarten confidently able to tackle the work that is set before them.
The bottom line: “If kids aren’t prepared they’ll never catch up,” Lift a Life’s Foundation Director, Ashley Butler said, “I sleep well at night knowing that these kids are being taught so well.”
Here are those that were awarded for their excellence at last night’s Excellence Academy Celebration of Achievement:
Denille (Shay) Thorton
The Lift a Life Foundation is proud to partner with the Community Foundation of Louisville to help create the Fund for Louisville grants program. The Fund for Louisville will provide funding to amp up capacity building by Louisville-area nonprofit organizations.
The new program is now accepting applications online, and the deadline is September 30. Nonprofits submit their grant applications through the Community Foundation’s website at www.cflouisville.org.
A total of $250,000 is available and will be distributed in grants of up to $25,000 each. Local nonprofits say financial support of their existing programs is a top priority for success, so the Fund for Louisville grants will help organizations:
“We are honored to partner with the Lift a Life Foundation,” said Susan Barry, President and CEO of the Community Foundation of Louisville. “The generosity of the Novak family and other philanthropists in our area allows us to have a tremendous impact on so many lives in our community. We are leading the way in showing our community the power of philanthropy.”
For more information on the program, visit www.cflouisville.org or contact the Community Foundation at 502.585.4649.
Kentucky Schools Recognized for Efforts to End Hunger
Two Kentucky schools were among 11 recognized for their efforts involving local hunger relief. The “Lead2Feed World Hunger Leadership Challenge” awarded the top prize, a $25K contribution to hunger relief, to Saint Francis Episcopal Day School in Houston, Texas. The “Leadership Challenge” is a joint effort between the Lift a Life Foundation, the YUM! Brands Fountation, and the USA TODAY Charitable Foundation.
Mercy Academy in Louisville was recognized as one of the Top 10 Lead2Feed school projects across the nation. Nine Mercy students participated in a variety of projects, including a “Rice Bowl Campaign,” which raised nearly $1200 for a local hunger relief group, to making and selling barcelets to raise funds for a community center. They also raised more than $700 to purchase livestock for women in developing countries.
P.A.T.C.H. (Parents as Teachers in Christian Homes) in Paducah, Kentucky was recognized for a student group that raised $900 to purchase bowls for a local fundraiser. The students then painted, glazed, fired and washed the bowls for the event, which ultimately raised $12,500 to provide nearly 600 meals for a community kitchen.
More than 30,000 middle and high school students in 1,500 schools participated in the nationwide challenge that enouraged students to work on their leadership skills through projects that focus on eliminating hunger. The Yum! Brands Foundation will provide $250K in grants to 140 schools for use in hunger relief in their communities.
The “Lead2Feed World Hunger Leadership Challenge” is a teacher-led educational program combining standards-basedcurriculum about leadership with the challenge of solving world hunger.
For more information about the Lead2Feed program, other winning schools, or the charities involved, click here.
The Lift a Life Foundation recently gifted $5 million to the Kosair Children’s Hospital Foundation to help establish the Wendy L. Novak Diabetes Care Center at the hospital.
The gift is part of a $12 million initiative that will fund the creation of a state-of-the-art comprehensive diabetes care center offering education and treatment of Type 1 diabetes. The gift also will provide support to hire a physician, educator and nurse practitioner specialists; enhance medical, technological and educational resources and programs available to families; and improve inpatient and outpatient care facilities.
“Thanks to the generosity of the Novaks and the Lift a Life Foundation, we have a unique opportunity to improve the care we can provide to children with diabetes,” said Lynnie Meyer, MSN, R.N., CFRE, and executive director of the Children’s Hospital Foundation. “We’ll now have the ability to provide more advanced programming and education aimed at helping families better manage their child’s diabetes.”
“The Lift a Life Foundation exists to provide individuals in need the opportunity to reach their full potential,” said Ashley Novak Butler, director of the Lift a Life Foundation. “Helping children manage their diabetes and avoid the devastating complications of the disease will help them meet, and hopefully exceed, their expectations for a full and healthy life. We can’t think of a better result from an investment.”
Includes up to $500,000 in Grant Prizes from Yum! Brands Foundation for U.S. Hunger Relief Charities.
For Immediate Release – October 16, 2012
$500,000 grant funds scholarships for Kentucky and Tennessee students
TULSA, Okla. – Folds of Honor Foundation has received a $500,000 grant from an anonymous donor to go towards post-secondary educational scholarships for the children and spouses of military service men and women killed or disabled while serving our great nation. Scholarships funded by this grant will specifically go to individuals either from or attending school in Kentucky or Tennessee. (more…)
The David C. and Wendy L. Novak Foundation has invested $400,000 to expand learning strategies at child care centers funded by Metro United Way within the seven-county region we serve through the establishment of the Early Childhood Excellence (ECE) Academy. The gift provides incentives and rewards teachers in child care centers for making quality improvements in their classroom. (more…)