In recognition of its impact on the lives of youth across Northwest Louisiana, StriveTogether designated Step Forward as a “Sustaining” Cradle to Career Network member. Just 46 communities have received this designation as part of a national movement to help every child succeed in school and in life, regardless of race, zip code or circumstance.

StriveTogether partners with nearly 70 communities across the nation that work on the ground to close gaps and create opportunities across education, health, housing and so much more. Step Forward is demonstrating clear evidence that Northwest Louisiana is aligning resources around effective solutions.

“We are proud of the gains we’ve made and excited to celebrate this win with the community,” said Laura Alderman. “None of this would be possible without the incredible support and hard work of our local partners. Together, our commitment to putting youth and families at the center of our work remains as strong as ever.”

Step Forward started when Northwest Louisiana came together with a shared mission: to support the success of every child, cradle to career. Over 1,000 cross-sector representatives serve as partners in this work, including school district superintendents, higher education administrators, early childhood educators, business and philanthropic leaders, community and corporate funders, and government officials.

“We refuse to settle for a world where a child’s potential is dictated by the conditions into which they are born,” said StriveTogether CEO and President Jennifer Blatz. “Change is possible when partnerships like Step Forward unite around a common vision and use data effectively for kids. We congratulate Northwest Louisiana improving results for kids and look forward to when they reach more milestones.”