Families, Children & Youth: Long Island, State & National

The Hagedorn Foundation (HF) is guided by the belief that all children deserve a happy, healthy and safe start to life. The Foundation considers parents and supportive communities to be essential players in the successful start of a young person's life and transition into adulthood. HF supports parents, community leaders, business leaders and policy-makers who protect and advocate on behalf of the well-being of children and youth. The Foundation supports projects and initiatives that improve early care and education, strengthen families and supportive communities and/or build public and political will to achieve these goals. Special attention will be paid to projects and initiatives that work in all three areas.

HF's primary focus is funding on Long Island. On a state and national level, we support research, policy work and related initiatives that directly benefit Long Islanders.

Giving in Action

Building Effective Advocacy Networks

While the economy recovered from the recession of 2008, children and families continue to struggle. The combination of significant budget cuts that were never restored and the polarized political climate make it difficult for advocates to implement existing programs, let alone advance new policies and funding to keep children and families strong.

“The research is powerful: If you invest in high-quality programs that coordinate with K-12 curricula and have mandatory teachers standards, the gains from early education are lasting. It’s also important that we focus on coordinating investments made in early childhood programs—such as Head Start—to ensure we are effectively using our funding, eliminating any waste and bolstering the structure of the education system.”

— Tim Kaine, United States Senator from Virginia

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Home Visiting— A Healthy Start to Build Better Families & More Productive Futures

Some of our nation’s costliest social problems—child abuse and neglect, school failure, poverty, unemployment and crime—are rooted in early childhood. Home visiting matches parents with trained professionals to provide information and support during pregnancy and throughout their child’s first three years, a critical development period. This quality interaction not only improves birth outcomes but also results in fewer children in social welfare programs and in mental health and juvenile corrections systems.

In New York State, more than 278,000 children under age five live below the poverty line, yet less than 13,000 home visiting slots exist. This more than 95 percent unmet need statewide is consistent with statistics for Long Island.

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