Civil Rights, Social Action, Advocacy

Children's Defense Fund

  • Washington, DC
  • www.childrensdefense.org

Mission Statement

The Children's Defense Fund Leave No Child Behind® mission is to ensure every child a Healthy Start, a Head Start, a Fair Start, a Safe Start and a Moral Start in life and successful passage to adulthood with the help of caring families and communities.

Main Programs

  1. Children's Defense Fund Program
  2. Freedom Schools
Service Areas

Self-reported

National

We are a national organization with the capacity to work for children at federal, state and community levels across the country. We have our headquarters in Washington, D.C., and offices in California, Minnesota, Mississippi, Montana, New York, Louisiana, Ohio, South Carolina and Texas. Through these offices, we expand our work into North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa, Alabama, Georgia, Arkansas and New Jersey.

ruling year

1969

Principal Officer since 1973

Self-reported

Marian Wright Edelman

Keywords

Self-reported

Children, advocacy, public policy, child health, poverty alleviation

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Also Known As

CDF

EIN

52-0895622

Contact

Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Alliance/Advocacy Organizations (R01)

Children's and Youth Services (P30)

Youth Development Programs (O50)

IRS Filing Requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Programs + Results

How does this organization make a difference?

Overview

Self-reported by organization

Well into our fourth decade, we are still leading the cause for children and renewing our organization for the future. To achieve our vision for children, our three-year strategic plan focuses on four priorities for children:

The Health Coverage for All Children Campaign(http://www.childrensdefense.org/helping-americas-children/childrens-health/health-coverage-for-all-children-campaign/) to secure comprehensive health and mental health coverage for every child and pregnant woman;
The Cradle to Prison Pipeline® Campaign(http://www.childrensdefense.org/helping-americas-children/cradle-to-prison-pipeline-campaign/) to stop the funneling of tens of thousands of youth down life paths that often lead to prison;
Developing youth leaders who will become the next generation of child advocates(http://www.childrensdefense.org/helping-americas-children/youth-development-leadership-training/) ; and
Ending child poverty(http://www.childrensdefense.org/helping-americas-children/ending-child-poverty/) and stabilizing families(http://www.childrensdefense.org/helping-americas-children/child-welfare/) .

We identify what children need and champion what works.

Programs

Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Program 1

Children's Defense Fund Program

Health Coverage Campaign:
In this campaign – to guarantee comprehensive health coverage for all children and pregnant women – CDF has convened hundreds of groups and secured endorsements from almost 1,300 organizations(http://www.childrensdefense.org/helping-americas-children/childrens-health/health-coverage-for-all-children-campaign/endorsing-organizations.html) representing more than 60 million people throughout the United States. With this national network, CDF has laid the groundwork to continue the work with in the 111th Congress to cover all children and pregnant women in America.In this campaign – to guarantee comprehensive health coverage for all children and pregnant women – CDF has convened hundreds of groups and secured endorsements from almost 1,300 organizations(http://www.childrensdefense.org/helping-americas-children/childrens-health/health-coverage-for-all-children-campaign/endorsing-organizations.html) representing more than 60 million people throughout the United States. With this national network, CDF has laid the groundwork to continue the work with in the 111th Congress to cover all children and pregnant women in America.

 

CDF's vision with it's Cradle to Prison Pipeline campaign is to reduce detention and incarceration by increasing preventive supports and services children need, such as access to quality early childhood development and education services and accessible, comprehensive health and mental health coverage. Emphasis must be shifted for the sake of our children and our nation's future.

 

Through nationwide initiatives and community-based programs, we plant the seeds to develop the next generation of servant-leaders who will continue to reweave the fabric of community for children and youth. Our vision is to create a successor generation of servant-leaders who will drive community and national transformations and inspire and make long-term improvements for children.

Category

Youth Development

Population(s) Served

Children and Youth (infants - 19 years.)

Poor/Economically Disadvantaged, Indigent, General

Budget

5,000,000

Program 2

Freedom Schools

The CDF Freedom Schools® program seeks to build strong, literate, and empowered children prepared to make a difference in themselves, their families, communities, nation and world today. By providing summer and after-school reading enrichment for children who might otherwise not have access to books, the CDF Freedom Schools program plays a much needed role in helping to curb summer learning loss and close achievement gaps – and is a key part of CDF’s work to ensure a level playing field for all children. To date over 135,000 children have participated in Freedom Schools, and over 15,000 young adults have been trained as Servant Leader Interns. CDF Freedom Schools currently exist in 28 states.

Category

Education

Population(s) Served

Children Only (5 - 14 years)

Ethnic/Racial Minorities -- General

Budget

$10,000,000

Service Areas

Self-reported

National

We are a national organization with the capacity to work for children at federal, state and community levels across the country. We have our headquarters in Washington, D.C., and offices in California, Minnesota, Mississippi, Montana, New York, Louisiana, Ohio, South Carolina and Texas. Through these offices, we expand our work into North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa, Alabama, Georgia, Arkansas and New Jersey.

External Reviews

Source: greatnonprofits.org

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Financials

Financial information is an important part of gauging the short- and long-term health of the organization.

CHILDREN'S DEFENSE FUND
Fiscal year: Jan 01-Dec 31
Yes, financials were audited by an independent accountant.

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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Children's Defense Fund

Leadership

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Principal Officer

Marian Wright Edelman

BIO

Mrs. Edelman, a graduate of Spelman College and Yale Law School, began her career in the mid-60s when, as the first black woman admitted to the Mississippi Bar, she directed the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund office in Jackson, Mississippi. In l968, she moved to Washington, D.C., as counsel for thePoor People's Campaign(http://www.childrensdefense.org/who-is-cdf/cdf-history/poor-peoples-campaign.html)  that Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. began organizing before his death. She founded the Washington Research Project(http://www.childrensdefense.org/who-is-cdf/cdf-history/washington-research-project.html) , a public interest law firm and the parent body of the Children's Defense Fund. For two years she served as the Director of the Center for Law and Education at Harvard University and in 1973 began CDF.

Governance

BOARD CHAIR

Mr. Geoffrey Canada

Harlem Children's Zone

BOARD LEADERSHIP PRACTICES

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RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

BOARD ORIENTATION & EDUCATION

Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

CEO OVERSIGHT

Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

ETHICS & TRANSPARENCY

Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

BOARD COMPOSITION

Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

BOARD PERFORMANCE

Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?