Center for the Study of Social Policy - 40 Years of Innovation
Ideas Into Action

Lessons Learned

CSSP is working closely with the Annie E. Casey Foundation to extract “Lessons Learned” from the Making Connections initiative. This multi-year, multi-city demonstration aimed at improving the lives of families and children in some of America’s toughest neighborhoods produced many “Lessons Learned” that can be applied wherever there is interest in place-based investment strategies.


CSSP is writing a series of papers that translate these lessons for the next generation of community change agents in the United States. The papers focus on the following themes:

  • The rigorous pursuit of clearly defined results at the neighborhood level
  • Building community capacity is essential to achieving and sustaining better results for children and families. 
  • Sustaining community change requires the commitment of local organizations to steward an ongoing focus on results and building the capacity to achieve and sustain them
  • One of the most powerful tools to help communities develop and sustain community change efforts is results-oriented, demand-driven technical assistance

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