“The Winnebago Tribe and Buffett Early Childhood Fund’s vision for what’s possible in this community inspires Travois,” said Phil Glynn, vice president of economic development. “We are proud to have worked with Chase to help bring that vision to reality.”
Eighteen Educare schools are up and running across America. This center will be the first Educare in a Native American community and will provide early childhood education to members of the Winnebago Tribe. Educare is a comprehensive early childhood education program that helps children from low-income families close the educational achievement gap. The model has succeeded in urban and rural low-income communities across America. A review of studies by the RAND Corporation, a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decision making through research and analysis, has shown that early childhood programs have significant and sizeable benefits on child development behavior and future educational attainment. Independent research shows Educare is effective in preparing young children for school.
“The Educare Center has been a huge project for the Winnebago Tribe for nearly three years,” said Winnebago Tribal Chairman John Blackhawk. “This is an exciting time for Winnebago tribal members and much appreciation is given to the Darla LaPointe, Winnebago education department director, Amy LaPointe, Head Start director, and Peggy LaRose, Little Hill Child Development Center director, for their tireless effort and extreme commitment to this project. We are pleased to offer such a priceless resource to our future generations. Also to the Buffett Early Childhood Foundation, without their knowledge and sensitivity to this project, we wouldn’t be where we are today. On behalf of the Winnebago Tribe, we extend a tremendous thank you to the New Market Tax Credit program, Travois, and Chase Community Development Banking.”
"This program will improve the outcomes of children in our community by identifying their needs at birth and building positive attitudes toward education from infancy to preschool,” said Amy LaPointe, Head Start director.
"The new Educare school in the Winnebago Nation will be a real game-changer for very young children whose families are facing some very tough odds," said Jessie Rasmussen, president of the Buffett Early Childhood Fund. "Each Educare is a public-private partnership, and the New Market Tax Credits are a crucial piece of the financing needed to turn this dream into reality. I offer a big thank you to everyone on the team who made this possible. Together with the Educare families, we will change the life trajectories of hundreds and even thousands of young children who otherwise would likely start school behind and never catch up."
The Buffett Early Childhood Fund provided more than $2 million to the project. Other private contributions included $1 million from Ruth and Bill Scott, $1 million from the Educare Replication Pool (which pools funds from the George Kaiser Family Foundation, the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, Buffett Early Childhood Fund, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Irving Harris Foundation ) and $400,000 from the Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation. Additionally, the Winnebago Tribe identified nearly $2.8 million in internal resources it could provide for up-front construction funding. Travois New Markets used $11.4 million of its NMTC allocation authority to enable the transaction, and Chase provided more than $3.6 million in tax credit equity for the $10.5 million facility.
“Chase’s investment in the Winnebago Educare facility illustrates our commitment to help bring meaningful and sustainable change within our in-need communities,”
The project is expected to create 59 full time jobs with an annual salary of $33,000 (two times the area living wage), 73 construction jobs, and will serve 191 students and families. The projected completion date is December 2013.
About the New Markets Tax Credit program
The New Markets Tax Credit program is administered by the Community Development Financial Institutions Fund (CDFI Fund) of the U.S. Department of the Treasury. Enacted by Congress in 2000, the program encourages the investment of private equity capital into low income communities and, in exchange, allows investors to receive federal tax credits equaling 39 percent of the investment over a seven-year period. These investments are made to spur community and economic revitalization. The NMTC statue requires that investments be located in census tracts where the individual poverty rate is at least 20 percent or where median family income does not exceed 80 percent of the area median. NMTC investments of $15.5 billion have generated a total of $50 billion in capital that has been invested in some of the nation’s most underserved communities. For more information, visit www.cdfifund.gov.
For more information about Chase, visit www.chase.com.
For more information about Travois, visit www.travois.com.