8 Ways You Can Support the Goals of Chattanooga 2.0

By the year 2025, it is estimated that 80% of living wage jobs in Hamilton County will require a 2-year or 4-year degree or industry credential. Chattanooga 2.0 was formed with two bold goals in mind to help Hamilton County prepare for the future– to double the number of graduates with postsecondary degrees or credentials AND increase the number of adults with college degrees or technical training certificates.

On Tuesday, November 27, across the country and in Hamilton County, businesses, community partners, families, charities and education leaders will be gathering together for Giving Tuesday. Causeway, United Way of Greater Chattanooga, The Community Foundation of Greater Chattanooga, Generosity Trust, and The Chattanooga Chamber of Commerce have all teamed up to bring Giving Tuesday to our community. By bringing together diverse groups of people, Giving Tuesday celebrates and encourages generosity. Chattanooga 2.0 is proud to have multiple coalition members joining these efforts and promoting giving this season.

Do you want to help ensure our community is focused on improving public education and give back to our students and education system? In preparation for Giving Tuesday, here are eight simple steps you can follow to help make Hamilton County the smartest community in the South!

Stay Informed.

      • Keep yourself informed about local happenings and make a point to know all the facts before judging what you hear on the news. In addition to local media, like radio, television, and newspaper, you can follow social media pages, sign up for organizational newsletters (sign up for ours here )
        and subscribe to podcasts to stay up-to-date on what’s happening in your community. There are many podcasts that cover the positive work going on such as:

      1. The CampHouse

      2. WUTC’s Around and About Chattanooga

      3. Chattanooga Chamber’s “Chattanooga Works”

      1. Volunteer.
        • Contact your local schools and volunteer. Get in touch with the principals and volunteer coordinators at the schools near your home and ask them where their greatest needs lie. If there are projects that require a group of people, like cleaning up the teacher’s lounge or creatively repainting the outside of the school building, consider asking your church or the human resources department at your office to approve a group to volunteer for a few hours. There is power in numbers and the impact can be immeasurable for students.
        • These are the Community Outreach Coordinators for each of the Learning Communities in Hamilton County:
            1. Harrison Bay Learning Community   
              1. Janelle Malone-Drake
              2. Email: drake_j@hcde.org
            2. Missionary Ridge Learning Community        
              1. Angela Clark
              2. Email: clark_a@hcde.org
            3. North River Learning Community    
              1. Andrew Stone
              2. Email: stone_andrew@hcde.org
            4. Rock Point Learning Community
              1. Jennifer White
              2. white_jennifer@hcde.org
            5. Opportunity Zone    
              1. Melissa Graham/John Cunningham
              2. graham_melissa@hcde.org, cunningham_j@hcde.org
      1. Utilize your Skills and Expertise.
      1. Donate.
      1. Host an ACEs or Chattanooga Basics presentation with your company.
        • The Chattanooga Basics are five simple, yet powerful ways to give your child a jumpstart at life!
        • If you would like to request a presentation or learn more about the Basics and the effect of ACEs (Adverse Childhood Experiences), click here.
      1. Become a Champion.
        • Whether it’s the importance of early childhood learning, methods to teach students about diversity and inclusion, or the value of teaching high school students soft skills in order to prepare them for the workforce, talk to your family, friends, neighbors, and coworkers about the important educational milestones along the cradle-through-career continuum. The more people who know about the ongoing work from birth through career, the more awareness and support we can build to have the greatest impact in Hamilton County.
      1. Advocate for Education.
        • Make sure your voice is heard! Challenge and support your elected officials. Register and vote in all elections. Attend school board meetings.
        • Advocacy doesn’t just mean calling your elected officials to sway them on an upcoming vote. If you meet a person doing something phenomenal and innovative in education, lift them up and connect them with Chattanooga 2.0! We are a collective impact coalition and together we are breaking down silos. Working together, we prevent overlap and can make the most use of our combined resources in order to help the most people.
      1. Do Your Part.
        • Working adults: Go back to school.
        • Students: Stay in school and go on to attain a technical certificate or college degree.
        • Employers: Encourage your employees to become mentors or offer facility tours to local high school students to educate them on career pathways.
        • Parents: Utilize tools like the Chattanooga Basics to give your children a jumpstart start in life.

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      Jennifer Andrews is the Program and Engagement Manager for Chattanooga 2.0.

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Our experiences as individuals inspire us together, to shape our community narrative. As an educator, a business owner, a parent, tell us about your experience with the education system.