The Value of Investing in Youth in the Washington Metropolitan Area

Like many regions across the country, the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area has prospered in the 1990s.

Overall, the region has experienced dramatic population gains and job growth, lower unemployment, and higher median household incomes. Private sector jobs are up. Capital investment and philanthropy are up. Crime is down. Social conditions are improving. The region's housing market is booming. And the greater Washington technology sector has been a major force behind the region's robust economy and a recognized leader in the global marketplace.

However, not all households or communities in this region have shared in this prosperity. Some families lack the skills, education, or other assets necessary to participate in the new economy; other families do not live in healthy neighborhoods that have - or have access to - good jobs, good schools, and good opportunities. These same families must raise their children in fragile environments that are not conducive to helping prepare children for bright futures.