The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is serious about poverty and its impact on our country.
As a result, the Center on Poverty, Work and Opportunity was established in response to the fact that millions of hard-working Americans still find themselves living in poverty.
Former North Carolina Senator John Edwards, the project's Director puts it this way,
"Poverty is one of the great issues of our time. It cuts to the heart of America's great promise: that anyone who works hard and plays by the rules will have the opportunity to build a better life for themselves and their family. I can't think of a better group of people to work on solving this problem than the remarkable students and faculty here at UNC-Chapel Hill.
"The Center brings the best minds in the country together with some of America's best and brightest young people. We do not pretend to have all the answers, but we will ask the hard questions:
- How can we restore the promise of America for those living in poverty?
- How can we combat poverty in a way that also honors our core beliefs in hard work, responsibility and family?
- How can we find ways to build more homes and fewer shelters, more small businesses and fewer minimum wage jobs?
- How can we find a way for government and charities and religious groups to work as more effective partners and honor America's traditions?
"It may seem like an impossible goal to end poverty, but that's what the skeptics said about all of the other great challenges we've faced as a nation. If we can put a man on the moon, conquer polio, and put libraries of information on a chip, we can end poverty for those who want to work for a better life."
The bipartisan center has convened a series of serious discussions about poverty, its impact and creative new approaches and solutions. Having a major academic institution behind the effort is encouraging and most promising in terms of new policy development.
Interested in finding out more about this promising project?
Visit the center's site at: http://www.law.unc.edu/Centers/details.aspx?ID=453&Q=3.
I think you will be impressed.
Here's just a portion of what you will discover about the center's mission:
The UNC Center for Poverty, Work and Opportunity will create a forum for the best minds in the state and the nation to work on issues of poverty, work and opportunity. The Center has four goals: first, to address the pressing needs of those currently living at or below the poverty level; second, to provide a non-partisan interdisciplinary forum to examine innovative and practical ideas to move more Americans out of poverty; third, to raise public awareness of issues related to work and poverty; and fourth to train a new generation to combat the causes and effects of poverty and to improve the circumstances of working people.