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Dreaming big ideas for Ohio's families

The first year of the Alliance for the American Dream energized our community, inspiring us to imagine new ways to help our neighbors find security and opportunity. We considered the many challenges facing the economically vulnerable, including limited access to transportation, housing, child care, food and education.

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2018 Winner Power of Home

Schmidt Futures and Ohio State have come together to support the Power of Home and its goal: to help new homebuyers on the edge of the middle class leverage the purchase of a new home to maximize their economic potential.

Read their story

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Our 2018 Alliance for the American Dream finalists

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Top 10 ideas

Of the more than 50 community-generated ideas, these leaders emerged.


Urban microfarm food production (Ohio Microfarm Project)

An urban microfarm-based food production system can capture $30M in fresh produce sales and create 1,000 small businesses that impact 10,000 families. Kent "Kip" Curtis, Department of History, College of Arts and Sciences


Increasing open access to information on jobs, education and credentials

A mobile application and website to link job seekers, employers and education professionals.
 Joshua Hawley, John Glenn College of Public Affairs


Social mobility platform for a unified transportation network

An innovative platform to fill in transportation gaps to promote upward social mobility and economic growth. 
Kimberly Gibson, Transitus


Community investment fund

Middle-class families would invest cash that would be matched by the fund, and the pool would be invested to create investor returns.
 Lisa Patt-McDaniel, Workforce Development Board of Central Ohio


Rural transportation system

A car loan fund for entry-level employees with financial capability training and coaching embedded.
 Melissa Pearce, Community Action Wayne/Medina


Reducing Expenses and Building Assets

Serving Northeast Columbus by expanding the bus program, reducing rental/mortgage costs and providing broad support for job access. 
Michael Wilkos, United Way of Central Ohio


Housing support for single parent households

Providing rental support with comprehensive life coaching, including financial management and career goals. 
Rachel Kleit, Move to PROSPER


Housing assistance for households who engage in training programs

Providing time-limited housing assistance and financial coaching for low-income individuals who are engaged in job skills training. 
Roberta Garber, Affordable Housing Alliance of Central Ohio


Support for students
(The Prosperity Promise)

Providing academic and social services to ensure students have holistic support while they earn credentials leading to in-demand careers.
 Shane Kirby, Columbus State Community College


Bundled financing for home improvements
(Power of Home)

Seeding a revolving loan pool that can be used for gap financing for homeowners to renovate more deeply depressed properties in Ohio. 
Stephanie Moulton, John Glenn College of Public Affairs

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