Tennessee Department of Human Services Holds Inaugural 2 Generation Consortium Meeting Focused on Creating Cycles of Success for Tennessee Families - 2G for Tennessee

Thursday, June 30, 2016 | 6:04pm

NASHVILLE – The Tennessee Department of Human Services (TDHS) hosted the first 2 Generation Consortium meeting in Nashville yesterday. The consortium is charged with constantly searching, identifying, and highlighting promising practices focused on addressing poverty in Tennessee, nationally, and internationally.  TDHS received a great response when the department announced the creation of the consortium at the end of 2015.

The two generation approach has a special focus on the success of both the parents and the children at the same time. The four key components of the two generation approach include education, economic supports, health and well-being and social capital. TDHS is one of the many key players involved in positively impacting families living in poverty. The consortium is an excellent avenue for the department to serve as a convener, an idea generator, and a partner to the human and social services sectors, both public and private.

“The 2G approach is a strategic opportunity for us to take an intentional look at the progress of both kids and parents. At DHS we deliver services and we also are human services. We do not see ourselves as the sole solution, but we see ourselves as key partners. 2G is going to take all sectors including public, private, corporate, education, faith-based, and any interested part that cares about people who are under resourced and living in poverty. The inaugural 2GC meeting was an excellent early step on the 2-Gen journey for Tennessee,” said DHS Commissioner Dr. Raquel Hatter. “As a society and as a community we have to display the courage to have difficult discussions around poverty, while also being focused on solutions for how to address it. The two-generation strategy is a way forward for us all and we are excited to be a part of 2G for Tennessee. Special thanks to all of our consortium members, partners and future 2Gen ambassadors. This is what we do!”

The consortium consists of representatives from public and private sectors as well as thought partners across a variety of areas.  As part of the inaugural meeting, the consortium members viewed presentations on the two generation approach from Ascend at the Aspen Institute and were briefed on practices taking place within TDHS. Consortium members also detailed strategies and programs from their organizations that align with the two generation approach as well as avenues for growth and collaboration.

“Tennessee and the Department of Human Services are national leaders in rethinking what it means to serve families holistically, so families and communities can thrive. We are proud to be part of the 2G for Tennessee Consortium,” Lori Broglio Severens of Ascend at the Aspen Institute said.

The meeting was also attended by several non-profit organizations appointed to the consortium.

"This is exciting for Nashville because of the opportunity to leverage existing resources in a way that equals success for the whole family. The two-generation approach is game changing in terms of outcomes for those living in poverty,” Erica Mitchell, Senior Director of Community Impact, United Way of Metropolitan Nashville said.

“We are excited about the opportunity for departments and organizations to align services across Tennessee for children and families in order to create cycles of success," Richard Kennedy, Associate Director, Tennessee Commission on Children and Youth said.

Mary Rolando who serves as the Health Advocacy Director for the Tennessee Department of Children’s Services and as a member of the consortium said, “This initiative dovetails and supports so much of what DCS is doing to support families within the community to promote well-being. We are excited to be a part of the 2G for Tennessee Consortium as it aligns with our initiative around Adverse Childhood Experiences or ACES.”

The consortium will issue reports sharing successes, lessons learned, and recommendations to serve as a resource to those committed to this important issue. The consortium will also enlist various national thought partners such as Ascend at the Aspen Institute, the American Public Human Service Association, the Alliance for Strong Families and Communities and others.

To learn more about TDHS and the two generation strategy visit:  http://www.tn.gov/humanservices/topic/2gen-approach

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Contact:  Devin Stone
(615) 313-4707

Human Services