Campaign for Grade-Level Reading Recognizes Children’s Opportunity Fund as a Bright Spot Community During COVID-19 Pandemic

Children’s Opportunity Fund Recognized for Work in Supporting Early School Success

The Greater Washington Community Foundation is pleased to share that the Campaign for Grade-Level Reading (CLGR) named Montgomery County, Maryland, as a 2021 Bright Spot community for its responses to the COVID-19 crisis last year.

Specifically, CLGR is highlighting communities that developed exemplary or innovative responses to the COVID-19 crisis, including new or adaptive roles, programs, organizational relationships/collaborations, policies and/or resources. In particular, the Campaign is recognizing communities for crafting solutions that seem especially effective, replication-worthy and/or deserving of being sustained during the post-COVID period.

As a co-founder of the Educational Enrichment and Equity Hubs in Montgomery County, we are humbled and proud to be recognized for this COVID-19 response work in the County. Established by The Community Foundation’s Children’s Opportunity Fund (COF), in partnership with certified childcare providers, The Black and Brown Coalition for Educational Equity and Excellence, and Montgomery County Public Schools, Equity Hubs offer low-income students grades K-8 a safe place to learn during remote learning due to the pandemic. These enrichment centers continue today, acting as active academic partners in assisting with distance learning and working to ensure that all students can excel.

“We are so thankful for all our community partners who have stepped up to help us close the opportunity gap by addressing racial inequities and expanding opportunities for Black, Brown, and low-income students,” said Anna Hargrave, executive director for Montgomery County at the Greater Washington Community Foundation. “The Equity Hubs are critical in our efforts to support our most marginalized youth and families in Montgomery County and we look forward to continuing this work in the future.”

Since September 2020, the Equity Hubs have welcomed over 1,400 students across 70 sites. Thanks to the support of public and private community partners, COF has raised and administered over $8.3 million to fund the Equity Hubs.

About the Campaign for Grade-Level Reading
Launched in 2010, the Campaign for Grade-Level Reading is a collaborative effort of funders, nonprofit partners, business leaders, government agencies, states and communities across the nation to ensure that many more children from low-income families succeed in school and graduate prepared for college, a career and active citizenship. CGLR focuses on promoting early school success as an important building block of more hopeful futures for children in economically challenged families and communities.

Since its launch, CGLR has grown to include more than 300 communities, representing 45 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and two provinces in Canada — with 5,000+ local organizations and 510 state and local funders (including 200+ United Ways). To learn more, visit and follow the movement on Twitter @readingby3rd.

About the Greater Washington Community Foundation
The Greater Washington Community Foundation exists to Build Thriving Communities by guiding strategic philanthropy, providing leadership on critical issues, promoting civic engagement, and inspiring local giving. Founded in 1973, The Community Foundation is a public charity made up of hundreds of charitable giving funds established by generous individuals, families, and businesses. We work with donors and partners to enhance the quality of life in the District of Columbia, Montgomery County, Northern Virginia, and Prince George’s County. As the region’s largest local funder, we manage $350 million in assets and have invested nearly $1.3 billion to build more equitable, just, and enriching communities where all residents can thrive.

The Children’s Opportunity Fund is a component fund of the Greater Washington Community Foundation. Funded jointly by the government of Montgomery County, Maryland, and Montgomery County Public Schools to leverage public funds to attract private investment, the Fund champions, plans and funds strategic investments that improve the lives of low-income children and families in the county. With a focus on innovative, evidence-informed efforts targeted at closing the opportunity gap, the Fund identifies priority areas for investment based on unmet need, aligns resources toward effective multi-sector collaborations serving the county’s most marginalized youth and their families, and seeks new funding sources.