This article was written for the Teachers College Annual Report for 2009. It is about how the Obama administration at the urging of experts including TC faculty, is moving towards funding organizations with proven track records on social programs such as the Nurse-Family Partnership.
Download a pdf of this story: TCAnnual09_Funding
Funding Social Programs That Work
Twenty-year-old Nicolette Rutherford was pregnant and living in a shelter in Manhattan with her boyfriend, Jerimy, when Sharon Curley, a nurse home visitor from the Nurse–Family Partnership, met her for the first time. Nicolette and Jerimy had just adopted a kitten.
“They were living in this tiny little room,” Curley recalls, shaking her head and smiling. “I mean, they didn’t even have their own bathroom, and now they take in this little cat and its litter box.”
What a difference a year makes. Today, thanks in large part to Curley’s efforts, Nicolette lives in a new apartment in a bright, clean neighborhood in Queens with her very healthy seven-month-old son, also named Jerimy.
“If it wasn’t for Sharon, I probably would have lost it,” Nicolette says. “It was really hard.”