The Success Equation, an initiative of Children First/CIS, unites our community to reduce poverty through education, collaboration and public policy advocacy resulting in an environment where all children can thrive. Would you like to become more involved and engaged in helping to end child poverty in Buncombe County?

Below are quick opportunities to learn, share, and act.


When our most vulnerable youth get the support they need to thrive, their chances for success are greatly increased. For 20 years the Children First/CIS Project POWER/AmeriCorps team members have provided this support as mentors, tutors, enrichment specialists, volunteer managers and garden supervisors in schools and after-school programs.

But the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), the federal agency that administers national service programs such as AmeriCorps, Senior Corps and Project Conserve, is now in jeopardy of being eliminated from the federal budget.

Please SIGN OUR PETITION HERE to protect this vital program.

To lose funding for the CNCS would be devastating for thousands of our local children, our veterans and the environment. AmeriCorps members and Senior Corps participants tutor and mentor struggling students, provide job training and other opportunities to returning veterans and military families, and coordinate relief and recovery efforts in areas affected by natural disasters.

This is all done at a very small cost at the federal level, due to matching support from private, philanthropic and local sources. The return on this modest federal investment is high.

Let your legislators know that we all benefit when our most vulnerable children get the support they need to thrive.


The YWCA’s 10th Annual Stand Against Racism, in partnership with YWCA Associations nationwide, aims to build community among those who work for racial justice and to raise awareness about the negative impact of institutional and structural racism.

Join the YWCA for the 2017 Stand Against Racism: Women of Color Leading Change! This year’s Stand Against Racism is scheduled for Thursday, April 27 – Sunday, April 30, but events will be taking place throughout the month of April. For more details on each event, please visit

CLICK HERE to see a list of all of the scheduled events for the month of April.


Join UNC Asheville’s “Facing Project: Facing Un-affordable and Inequitable Housing in Asheville,” a performance and discussion on Thursday, April 13 from 6:30-8 p.m. at the YMI Cultural Center at 39 S. Market Street in downtown Asheville. The event will focus on individual Asheville residents’ experience with affordable housing, and is free and open to the public.

Students collected stories by interviewing members of the Asheville community about their individual experience and struggles with affordable housing in the city. The students then compiled those stories in the first-person and will share them through writing and acting. “This event will provide a ground-up perspective on the housing crisis from the people who live it and fight it,” said UNC Asheville senior and Facing Project Coordinator JaNesha Slaughter.


Have you ever wondered if there was one place you could go to to find out how to create grassroots advocacy actions for yourself or a group? Children First/CIS has created a series of on-line advocacy tool-kits to assist people in engaging elected officials, links to local commissions and tips on how to outreach to media. The tool-kits are separated between local, state and federal and include information on how to find and contact your elected officials, a template for writing a letter to the editor, and tips on how to make a phone call to your elected representatives. Perfect for grass-root advocacy groups, school groups and interested individuals, you can find these advocacy tool-kits HERE or go to


We know that children who live in food secure households are healthier and better prepared to learn. This is why programs such as SNAP (formerly known as food stamps), the Women, Infants and Children (WIC) Food and Nutrition Service, and the free and reduced meal program at schools are vital to making sure children get the food they need to thrive.

A recent study shows how hunger during specific times in infancy and early childhood can result in subtle but significant differences in learning abilities later in childhood.

Early experience of high levels of hunger in the household strongly correlated with poor performance in kindergarten. And the younger the children were when the family struggled with hunger, the stronger the effect on their performance once they started school.

According to one of the researchers, “When children were 9 months old, those who experienced food insecurity were more likely five years later, in kindergarten, to have lower reading and math scores than similar low-income 9-month-olds who didn’t experience food insecurity.” Read the Full Story on here



Find out how you can get even more involved
in creating a community where all children can thrive!

  • Sign up for our Action Alerts for up-to-the-minute alerts on important policy decisions and ways you can make your voice count for kids!
  • Follow us on our Success Equation Facebook page and on Twitter @CFCISAdvocacy to receive information and updates on how you can help create a community where all children can thrive.
  • Check out our Local, State and Federal Advocacy Tool-kits to guide you in engaging with our elected officials.
  • Volunteer to participate in monthly phone banking to inform our neighbors on important issues impacting children and families. Contact Jodi Ford at 828-620-9091 or


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