Will Implement Evidence-Based Programs Identified as Top Priorities by Providence Residents



Rebecca Boxx
Director, Providence Children and Youth Cabinet
office: 401.863.5440 or cell: 401.662.1637


PROVIDENCE – The Providence Children and Youth Cabinet (CYC) has been awarded a sizeable grant from the Rhode Island Department of Health to coordinate the delivery of resident-identified, evidence-based programs that battle the root causes of chronic absence from school, anxiety, depression, and delinquency in Providence’s children and youth living in the West End and Southside neighborhoods. The grant has the potential to bring more than $1 million in funding to these efforts over the next four years.

The award will support the Evidence2Success initiative, a national pilot led locally by the CYC. The Evidence2Success framework helps community and public system leaders invest public dollars in evidence-based programs that address desired outcomes for children and is a joint effort with the Annie E. Casey Foundation.

“This grant is a great vote of confidence in the progress Providence neighborhoods and the CYC have made in using data to develop a joint vision for children, and in putting proven programs to work that can achieve that vision,” said Suzanne Barnard director of the Evidence-Based Practice Group at the Casey Foundation.

While these prevention programs address multiple risk factors facing children in the city, the funding of a proven approach to reduce the high rates of chronic absence while improving school climate was a top priority for residents, students, and the Providence Public School District (PPSD). The CYC will serve as the backbone to the initiative, coordinating the collaborative effort among six local organizations, including PPSD.

The CYC aims to achieve Collective Impact, a strategy in which a broad cross-sector coalition works together to effect large-scale social change – in this case working toward the goal of cradle-to-career success for all of Providence’s children and youth. The CYC has been a fundamental leader in the Collective Impact work taking place in Providence.

The CYC’s funding is part of a $2.15-million grant from the Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to the Rhode Island Department of Health.

“We share the Health Department’s eagerness to tackle some of the most persistent problems faced by our children with this collaborative, evidence-based, and community-driven initiative,” said Rebecca Boxx, director of the Providence CYC. “In particular this grant recognizes that chronic absenteeism is not just a school issue; it is also a community health issue. Children who experience health issues such as asthma, hunger, and depression are more likely to miss school. And because absenteeism is closely linked to low academic performance and high drop-out rates, a coordinated, system-wide effort that addresses its multiple causes is an absolute priority for our city. This grant is a huge win for every member of the CYC and their unwavering commitment to the coalition and Collective Impact.”


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About the CYC

The CYC is a cross-sector coalition of 150 members and 60 children- and youth-serving organizations that is designed to ensure that all children and youth in the City of Providence, from cradle to career, will have access to a coordinated, collaborative, integrated system of educational, social, physical, and behavioral health services. The Annenberg Institute for School Reform at Brown University is the anchor institution and home of the Children and Youth Cabinet.