WINGS for Kids, a nonprofit in Charleston, South Carolina, focused on social and emotional learning, has announced a $2.5 million grant from the Edna McConnell Clark Foundation in support of its national expansion and sustainability efforts.
The organization will use the funds to expand its SEL-focused afterschool program to more students in low-income communities across the country through both a direct service model and affiliate partnerships. The grant also will support the organization's capacity building and long-term sustainability efforts, as well as ongoing evaluations aimed at demonstrating the program’s effectiveness in teaching children valuable social and emotional skills and its measurable impact on their lives inside and beyond the classroom.
WINGS also announced that its CEO, Bridget Laird, has been named as one of ten Champions of Children's Wellbeing by Ashoka Changemakers and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. In that capacity, Laird will work with fellow thought leaders and innovators during a six-month challenge to develop a network of experts who support efforts to advance physical and emotional well-being for all children.
"We believe that WINGS for Kids does great work to bring social and emotional learning to kids who need it most," said EMCF director of portfolio operations Teresa Power. "We're excited about WINGS' performance to date showing the differences [it is] making in kids' lives. Our investment will support WINGS' continued growth, while at the same time make it possible for WINGS to build its team and organization so it can sustain this work for more kids in the years to come."