promise neighborhoods consortium
Since spring of 2009, a team of community members in Richmond has been developing a Promise Neighborhood initiative, which seeks to replicate the Harlem Children’s Zone model of best practices. The team, which was originally convened by Bill Roberts of the Robins Foundation, now includes representatives from The Community Foundation, United Way, VCU, Richmond Public Schools, City of Richmond, Richmond Redevelopment and Housing Authority, Better Housing Coalition, LISC, Bon Secours, Communities In Schools of Richmond, Peter Paul Development Center, and other community-based service providers and funders. The effort is in its planning stage, and is leading to an application for a federal grant opportunity to plan for and implement a Promise Neighborhood. The US Department of Education will award Promise Neighborhood planning grants of up to $500,000 to 20 communities across the country. By creating a Promise Neighborhood in Richmond, a neighborhood will benefit from Harlem Children’s Zone’s effective model, which is a proven paradigm for fighting poverty, intended to overcome the limits of traditional approaches.