In the environment of change, be it political, educational, financial, or social change, there is an ongoing debate on whether money (and lots of it) is an answer. There are instances where money (and the support mechanisms that money can create) has proven beneficial and, in contrast, there are numerous situations where money, regardless of the amount, has had little to no consequence over time.

As an individual invested in positive change for people and organizations, I am always on the lookout for examples of how forward looking and sustainable change can happen. I find many flickers, but they are short-lived. So, you can imagine the size of my smile as I read the account of an unintended outcome of The Great Smokey Mountains Study of Youth noted in the Washington Post article titled “The remarkable thing that happens to poor kids when you give their parents a little money.”

It is both an informative and heartwarming tale of how good fortune and not flamboyant largess, of which we hear way too much, can change lives for the better. I encourage you to take the time to read the WP article; it is short and cuts to the chase. It brings that often needed warm, fuzzy feeling of hope and good will that is not the norm in the cold and frustrating climate of change agency.

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