The Creation of the Children's Defense Fund
Poverty in families is a huge issue that children do not have control over. It affects their education and limits the amount of opportunity available to these children. A primary goal of Ms. Edelman is to help the children living in poverty, to create more opportunities, more rights, and create a healthy human being. The image above shows the current poverty rates of the United States and under the leadership of Marian Wright Edelman, it continues to fight this obstacle by helping to create programs and lobby congress for education rights and opportunities to ensure a better future for the children and their families.
Marian Wright Edelman established the Children's Defense Fund (CDF) in 1973 as a voice for poor, minority and handicapped children. She served as a public speaker on behalf of these children, and also as a lobbyist in Congress. She also works as president and administrative head of the organization. The agency serves not only as an advocacy organization, but as a research center to document the problems and act on behalf of the children for a better future.
Marian Wright Edelman, president of the Children's Defense Fund, speaking up for America's Children.
The following video will provide an understanding for the purpose and creation for the Children's Defense Fund. It will reveal what Marian Wright Edelman stands for.
The Childrens Defense Fund (CDF) Mission Statement
"The Children’s Defense Fund Leave No Child Behind® mission is to ensure every child a Healthy Start, a Head Start, a Fair Start, a Safe Start and a Moral Start in life and successful passage to adulthood with the help of caring families and communities." - See more at: http://www.childrensdefense.org/about/#About
Programs Achieved by Ms. Edelman's Children's Defense Fund
Beat The Odds Program
A program that honors outstanding high schools students who have overcome tremendous adversity, demonstrated academic excellence and given back to their communities. Started in 1990, the program identifies and rewards young people who have experienced significant hardship in their lives and supports and trains them to become future leaders in adulthood. CDF holds five high-profile awards events to send a clear signal that someone does care and understand what it takes to stay in school and do well while coping with adversity in their personal lives. The program is held each year in California, Washington, D.C., Texas, Minnesota, New York, and Ohio. Not only do these awards events celebrate the scholarship recipients, they demonstrate that behind each successful child is at least one caring adult
Freedom Schools Program
Builds strong, literate, and empowered children to prepare them to make a difference in themselves, their families, communities, nation and world today. It provides summer and after-school reading enrichment for children who might otherwise not have access to books; the CDF Freedom Schools program plays a much needed role in helping to curb summer learning loss and close achievement gaps. It partners with local congregations, schools, colleges and universities, community organizations, and secure juvenile justice facilities. The CDF Freedom Schools program boosts student motivation to read, generates more positive attitudes toward learning, increases self-esteem and connects the needs of children and families to the resources of their communities. Since 1995, more than 137,000 preK-12 children have had a CDF Freedom Schools experience and more than 16,000 college students and young adult staff have been trained by CDF to deliver this empowering model.
Youth Development and Leadership
The goal of this program is to develop the next generation of servant-leaders who will continue to mend the fabric of community for children and youth. Their vision is to create a successor generation of servant-leaders who will drive community and national transformations and inspire to make long-term improvements for children. For the past 22 years, the program has supported more than 700 students with college scholarships, and has served as a catalyst for young people to become doctors, lawyers, Peace Corps volunteers, teachers and contributing citizens in their communities
Faith Based Action
This program is made up of religious people and organizations . Its members have deep roots in communities across the country, a history of caring for children, and moral authority. Together they help build a successful Leave No Child Behind movement by using the voices in different communities.
Marian Wright Edelman has built up strong leadership characteristics that have helped her to reach success.
- Desire and Dedication
(more examples in bolded sections of text above)
These characteristics are visible throughout her career as an activist and protector of rights. It's is these key characteristics that led her to accomplish the goals she set her mind to do. Despite the obstacles of the racists time period she lived in, she did not give up. She fought extensively for justice and she did not give up until she achieved what she hoped to achieve and more.