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Opinion: Norwalk ACTS carries on

Anthony Allison

Anthony Allison is the executive director of Norwalk ACTS.

Shout Out to the entire Norwalk ACTS ecosystem and its members. Cathy DeCesare’s – Norwalk ACTS Board Chair – update below highlights aspects of the continued accountability that all members feel in order to fulfill the stated mission of Norwalk ACTS – to enrich and improve the lives and futures of all of Norwalk’s children and youth, from cradle to career.

 

Dear Norwalk ACTS Members,

As promised, I want to provide an update after the Board meeting on Tuesday, January 22.

Several board members attended an event at Tracey Elementary School on January 16.  The release of the report “From a Nation at Risk to a Nation at Hope,” funded by the Dalio Foundation, brought Norwalk educational leaders, teachers, parents, students, funders and community partners together to affirm the need for a holistic approach – social, emotional and cognitive development – as essential to children’s academic learning and success.  Board members spoke about the experience and how impressed they were with the culture of Tracey School and the way students and teachers interacted with each other and all the guests in the school. It was rewarding to see Norwalk ACTS recognized for our work to engage the community around the need to understand and address the social and emotional aspects of child development

  • Investor Relations:

→ The Development Committee continues to build out the Norwalk Investor Map.

→ The Board endorsed moving to the next step in development of a Collective Impact Opportunity Fund. The Development Committee will create a draft document that outlines the design of the fund. Three funders have agreed to start the fund with plans to systematically add funders.

  • Initiative Work:

→  Anthony updated the board on tools the workgroups are using to focus on data and strategies that lead to improved outcomes. The Board is looking to better understand what the priorities are for each workgroup and how board members can assist. As an example, where do board members have influence within health sector to open up conversations with pediatricians about ways to increase early development screenings and connect families with services.

→ Norwalk ACTS was invited to submit an application to Social Venture Partners (SVP). The first phase of the process was completed.  This is an opportunity to expand resources through a combination of dollars and technical assistance.

  • Structure and Staffing:

→ 501c3 process continues to move forward.

→ Applications received for the CEO position are being reviewed. Goal is to have a first round of interviews begin in early February. Concurrent with the interview process, a board task force is working on a benefit package for Norwalk ACTS employees.

 

Please be sure to visit the Norwalk ACTS website http://www.norwalkacts.org/  and reach out to board, staff and members with any questions.

Best,

Cathy DeCesare

Board Chair

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