General Resources on Disadvantaged Maine Populations

Data Glimpse: Maine Population Change 2010-2018

Data Glimpse: Maine Population Change 2010-2018

Maine’s population change has been sporadic since 2010, due to irregular influxes of migrants. However, the pace at which Maine deaths are outpacing births is increasing over time.The population of Maine increased by about 10,000 people between 2010 and 2018. The majority of Maine’s 2010-2018 population increase was due to migration, with more than 18,000 net migrants into the state (56 percent international). Deaths outpaced births during this period in the state by more than 7,400. View Resource
Improving ACA Subsidies for Low- and Moderate-Income Consumers Is Key to Increasing Coverage

Improving ACA Subsidies for Low- and Moderate-Income Consumers Is Key to Increasing Coverage

A new report from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP) posits that the
key to increasing health insurance coverage is to expand subsidies offered through the
Affordable Care Act. Although cost is the main barrier to coverage for uninsured
populations, the majority of the uninsured have low incomes and are eligible for ACA
marketplace options. CBPP suggests that costs of expanded subsidies could be met by
scaling back the tax cuts from the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.

  View Resource

The Poverty-Reducing Effect of Five Key Government Programs in Rural and Urban America

The Poverty-Reducing Effect of Five Key Government Programs in Rural and Urban America

Federal programs are critical for helping those with low incomes make ends meet. But not all such programs are equally effective at reducing poverty, nor do they benefit all of those in poverty uniformly. In this brief, we explore the extent to which rural and urban residents access five social programs—Social Security, disability benefits, federal and state cash assistance, the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)— and the effect of these programs individually and collectively in bringing family incomes closer to the poverty threshold. View Resource

Designing for Success: Early Implementation of College Promise Programs

College Promise programs aim to make students believe they can afford college, and to give them the opportunity to go to college and earn degrees without taking on significant debt. At the core of all College Promise programs is a scholarship: All eligible College Promise students receive scholarships that may cover up to 100 percent of tuition and fees at postsecondary institutions. Additionally, many Promise programs are designing, implementing, and refining additions to their models by providing students with support services once they enroll in college. MDRC’s College Promise Success Initiative (CPSI) provides important lessons for Promise programs interested in including such services.


This brief shares early lessons from CPSI about how different Promise programs are designing, implementing, and refining their models with embedded student services in mind. View Resource

Maine Data Glimpse: Share of Householders Age 60+ Living Alone

Maine Data Glimpse: Share of Householders Age 60+ Living Alone

This graphic shows the share of Maine residents age 60 and older who live alone.

  • More than two of every five Maine seniors lives alone (41.3 percent).
  • Rates in Waldo County are lower than the statewide share, at 35.9 percent.
  • The share of seniors living alone is higher than the statewide estimate in Androscoggin and Knox Counties (44.9 percent and 45.7 percent, respectively).
View Resource
Developing a State Learning Agenda: The Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting Program

Developing a State Learning Agenda: The Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting Program

The Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting (MIECHV) Program supports voluntary, evidence-based home visiting services for at-risk pregnant women and parents with young children up to kindergarten entry. At the federal level, MIECHV has engaged in a strategic approach, the MIECHV Learning Agenda, to develop a portfolio of evidence about the implementation and impacts of MIECHV in multiple settings and contexts. The agenda includes a variety of activities, including performance measurement, continuous quality improvement (CQI), systematic reviews, descriptive research, and implementation and impact evaluation. States and territories receiving funding from MIECHV are encouraged to conduct rigorous state-led evaluations. State-led evaluations address questions of interest to the state and provide new insights on the scale-up and implementation of home visiting programs. MIECHV encourages state awardees to develop their own learning agendas to ensure that they use the best available evidence to improve performance. View Resource
Redesigning the Financial Roadmap for the LMI 50+ Segment

Redesigning the Financial Roadmap for the LMI 50+ Segment

For decades, the financial lives of Americans over the age of 50  were understood to follow a predictable lifecycle pattern. After working full-time into their early 60s, these individuals stopped working completely and began depending financially on a defined benefit pension plan. With a paid-off mortgage, comprehensive healthcare coverage, and reduced living expenses, they were free  to live frugally, but securely, in their retirement. View Resource

Social Service Delivery in Two Rural Counties

Social Service Delivery in Two Rural Counties

When low-income residents struggle to make ends meet, non-profit social service agencies can help fill the gaps. In doing so, these agencies must find sufficient funding, retain qualified staff, and craft efficient service delivery mechanisms that are respectful of clients and communities. Some of the challenges that service providers encounter are exacerbated by rural characteristics, such as vast geographic distances and the lack of economies of scale. Yet in some ways rurality is beneficial, as small communities can facilitate community engagement and providers can engage natural supports in their service delivery work. View Resource
Maine Data Glimpse: Family Poverty in Maine by Family Type, 2012-2016

Maine Data Glimpse: Family Poverty in Maine by Family Type, 2012-2016

This figure displays the poverty rates for Maine families by county and family type.

  • Across all counties, single mother poverty is about six times as high as among married couple families.
  • Single father poverty rates are similar to married parent poverty rates across all counties, speaking to the disparities in mothers’ and fathers’ incomes.
View Resource
Using the Science About Self-Regulation to Improve Economic Outcomes for TANF Families

Using the Science About Self-Regulation to Improve Economic Outcomes for TANF Families

Administrators and staff of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) programs are continually looking for new strategies to help their participants achieve economic independence. Many TANF employment programs focus on rapid job placement with some access to short-term education, training, and work-like activities, such as work experience, subsidized employment, and on-the-job training. These programs typically offer child care assistance and some work supports as well. View Resource
An Invisible Tsunami: ‘Aging Alone’ and Its Effect on Older Americans, Families, and Taxpayers

An Invisible Tsunami: ‘Aging Alone’ and Its Effect on Older Americans, Families, and Taxpayers

Social capital may be most valuable when an individual’s needs are greatest. Old age is a time of life when people often need to rely on family, friends, and other social relationships for care they are no longer able to provide for themselves. If an elderly adult lacks those relationships, however, they may have to lean more heavily on paid professional care, potentially leading to a lower quality of life and higher costs for families and government. View Resource
Opportunity Industries: Exploring the industries that concentrate good and promising jobs in metropolitan America

Opportunity Industries: Exploring the industries that concentrate good and promising jobs in metropolitan America

In recent decades, technological change and the global integration it enables have been rapidly reshaping the U.S. economy. These forces have improved the potential of some individuals to thrive, but diminished prospects for others striving to reach or maintain their place in the American middle class. Amid these changes, how and where will individuals find durable sources of good jobs? View Resource
Working-Family Tax Credits Lifted 8.9 Million People out of Poverty in 2017

Working-Family Tax Credits Lifted 8.9 Million People out of Poverty in 2017

The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and Child Tax Credit (CTC) together boosted the incomes of 29.1 million Americans in 2017, lifting 8.9 million above the poverty line and making 20.2 million others less poor, our analysis of new Census data shows. These totals include 12.5 million children, 4.8 million of whom were lifted out of poverty and another 7.7 million made less poor. The figures use the Census Bureau’s Supplemental Poverty Measure, which — unlike the official poverty measure — accounts for the impact of taxes and non-cash benefits as well as cash income. View Resource
Overdue for Investment: State Child Care Assistance Policies 2018

Overdue for Investment: State Child Care Assistance Policies 2018

Child care is crucial for the well-being of parents, children, and our nation. It makes it possible for parents to work and support their families. It gives children a safe, nurturing environment to learn and develop skills they need to succeed in school and in life. And, by strengthening the current and future workforce, it bolsters our nation’s economy. Yet many families, particularly low-income families, struggle with the high cost of child care. These costs can strain families’ budgets, force parents to use lower-cost care even if they would prefer other options for their children, or prevent parents from working because they cannot afford care. Child care assistance can enable families to overcome these challenges by helping families pay for child care. View Resource
Pathways to High-Quality Jobs for Young Adults

Pathways to High-Quality Jobs for Young Adults

Helping young people prepare to engage in work and life as productive adults is a central challenge for any society. Yet, many young people in the United States—particularly those from low-income or less educated families—find that the path to employment and economic security in adulthood is poorly marked or inaccessible.

Using an advanced methodology and longitudinal data, this report examines two main questions:

  • The quality of jobs (as measured by wages, benefits, hours, and job satisfaction) held by 29-year-olds who experienced disadvantage in adolescence
  • Whether particular employment, education, and training experiences in adolescence and early adulthood predict higher-quality jobs for 29-year-olds from disadvantaged backgrounds

  View Resource

Nation's Progress on Children's Health Coverage Reverses Course

Nation's Progress on Children's Health Coverage Reverses Course

For the first time since comparable data was first collected in 2008, the nation’s steady progress in reducing the number of children without health insurance reversed course. The number of uninsured children under age 191 nationwide increased by an estimated 276,000 to about 3.9 million (3,925,000) in 2017, according to newly-available data from the U.S. Census Bureau (Figure 1). The rate of uninsured children ticked upward from the historic low of 4.7 percent in 2016 to 5 percent in 2017 (Figure 2). Both of these changes were large enough to be statistically significant.

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Do EITC Expansions Pay for Themselves? Effects on Tax Revenue and Public Assistance Spending

Do EITC Expansions Pay for Themselves? Effects on Tax Revenue and Public Assistance Spending

This paper studies how behavioral responses to the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) aect the program's budgetary cost. The EITC encourages labor supply and increases income, thereby reducing public assistance payments to households and increasing taxes paid by households. These sources of revenue reduce the EITC's net cost. We use administrative Internal Revenue Service tax data linked to Current Population Survey data on enrollment in public assistance programs to estimate the EITC's net cost. The evidence from three decades of EITC policy expansions implies that the EITC decreases public assistance received by mothers and increases payroll and sales taxes paid. Our estimates suggest that the EITC has a self-nancing rate of 87 percent, so that the EITC's true cost is only 13 percent of the sticker price. Although the EITC is one of the largest and most important public assistance programs in the U.S., we show that the EITC is actually one of the least expensive anti-poverty programs in the U.S., costing taxpayers about half as much as the school lunch and breakfast
programs. View Resource
Housing Stability Among First Place-Involved Youth

Housing Stability Among First Place-Involved Youth

The following brief on housing stability of youth experiencing homelessness or with prior experiences of homelessness in Portland, ME is the first in a series of briefs on the experiences of First Place program participants. The Evaluation of the First Place Program examined the experiences of 35 youth who accessed Preble Street’s First Place program between 2015 and 2018. The study included two core components: an implementation study and a qualitative youth study. The implementation study explored how the program was designed, implemented, and modified over time. The descriptive youth study examined youth characteristics and experiences in the following domains: housing, employment, education, risk behaviors, demographic characteristics, and social and emotional well-being. Program participants were interviewed at the time of program enrollment and again 12 months later to capture changes in youth experiences over the program period. View Resource
Who Was Poor in the United States in 2017?

Who Was Poor in the United States in 2017?

For the past few years, The Hamilton Project has released an annual report characterizing poverty in America. Describing who is poor is critical for making anti-poverty policy and directly relevant to determining eligibility for means-tested programs.

In 2017, 12.3 percent of the population—39.7 million people—lived in poverty, as defined by the official poverty measure [1]. The share of the population living in poverty was statistically significantly lower in 2017 than in 2016 by 0.4 percentage points. View Resource
How Secure Is Employment at Older Ages?

How Secure Is Employment at Older Ages?

This report assesses the precariousness of older adults’ employment. Using a nationally representative longitudinal survey, we follow workers from their early 50s to age 65 and beyond and measure the incidence of involuntary job separations. Our analysis focuses on employer-related separations as opposed to quits driven by poor health, family caregiving responsibilities, or other personal reasons. We tabulate separations caused by layoffs and business closings as well as quits motivated by job dissatisfaction and unexpected retirements. We consider only those separations that have serious financial consequences, leading to long spells of nonwork or substantially reduced earnings. Our results show that slightly more than one-half of adults in their early 50s who are working full time, full year with a long-term employer subsequently experienced an employer-related involuntary job separation. Only 1 in 10 of these involuntarily separated workers ever earned as much after their separation as before. Median household income fell 42 percent following an employerrelated involuntary job separation, and median household income at age 65 for workers who experienced an involuntary separation was 14 percent lower than for those who did not. View Resource
Creating an Integrated Efficient Early Care and Education System to Support Children and Families:  A State-by-State Analysis

Creating an Integrated Efficient Early Care and Education System to Support Children and Families: A State-by-State Analysis

Recognizing the critical importance of children’s earliest years in terms of brain development and later life outcomes, the federal government invests billions of dollars each year in programs designed to provide early care and education (ECE) to children under the age of five. Most federal funds flow through programs managed by federal agencies—principally the U.S. Department of Education and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services—to the states, which have wide discretion regarding how the funds are administered and coordinated to provide ECE services. Additionally, many states fund Pre-Kindergarten (Pre-K) and preschool programs using their own state resources. View Resource
The Tough Road From Foster Care To College

The Tough Road From Foster Care To College

College students often decamp from their universities during the summer to intern, study abroad or just get a break from dining hall food. But for Kayla Mayes, it’s a time to buckle down.

Her first semester at Western Michigan University, Mayes barely earned a 1.7 grade-point average. A class on the health effects of drug use felt overwhelming — “I wasn’t used to such long lectures,” she said — and pre-algebra was a struggle too. But good grades in reading and writing classes helped her finish the year with a 2.6 GPA and now she is hoping to lift it higher.

View Resource
Evaluation of the Effect of the Older Americans Act Title III-C Nutrition Services Program on Participants’ Health Care Utilization

Evaluation of the Effect of the Older Americans Act Title III-C Nutrition Services Program on Participants’ Health Care Utilization

The Administration on Aging (AoA) within ACL at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services administers the Older Americans Act Title III-C Nutrition Services Program (NSP). The NSP promotes access to nutritious meals, nutrition education, and nutrition counseling; facilitates social contact; and conducts health promotion activities all which help older adults maintain their independence in their homes and communities. View Resource
A Child's Day: Parental Interaction, School Engagement, and Extracurricular Activities: 2014

A Child's Day: Parental Interaction, School Engagement, and Extracurricular Activities: 2014

Children’s lives are shaped by their experiences in school and in extracurricular activities—both of which are sources of learning, identity formation, and socialization. This report uses a number of indicators to portray aspects of children’s well-being, primarily as it relates to involvement in school and extracurricular activities. The report also explores other aspects of children’s lives, such as parental engagement in reading, outings, and shared dinners. The findings come from Wave 1 of the 2014 Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP). View Resource
Balancing Work and Learning

Balancing Work and Learning

It has gotten increasingly harder for students to work their way through college, especially for low-income students who face steep challenges when combining work and learning. Students from higher-income families tend to benefit as they work fewer hours in jobs directly related to their fields of study. Low-income working college students often work longer hours, and as a result, are less likely than their higher-income peers to get good grades and attain bachelor’s degrees or any credential at all. View Resource
Material Hardship among Nonelderly Adults and Their Families in 2017

Material Hardship among Nonelderly Adults and Their Families in 2017

Federal and state policymakers are weighing changes to federal programs that help low-income people meet their basic needs for food, medical care, and shelter. As policymakers consider these changes to the public safety net, they run the risk of increasing material hardship, which could have detrimental short- and long-term impacts on children and adults. View Resource
Household Food Security in the United States in 2017

Household Food Security in the United States in 2017

An estimated 11.8 percent of American households were food insecure at least some time during the year in 2017, meaning they lacked access to enough food for an active, healthy life for all household members. That is down from 12.3 percent in 2016. The prevalence of very low food security also declined, to 4.5 percent from 4.9 percent in 2016. View Resource
Housing for Young Adults in Extended Federally Funded Foster Care

Housing for Young Adults in Extended Federally Funded Foster Care

For many decades, child welfare agencies, with few exceptions, only served children. State responsibility for the safety and well-being of youth in foster care ended at age 18 (or 19, at the state’s discretion, in the case of youth who were completing high school). In 2008, the Fostering Connections to Success and Increasing Adoptions Act amended Title IV-E of the Social Security Act by giving states the option to extend the age of eligibility for federally funded foster care to 21. View Resource

From Adolescence to Adulthood: A Blueprint for Helping Maine’s Youth Succeed

From Adolescence to Adulthood: A Blueprint for Helping Maine’s Youth Succeed

All young people deserve an equal chance to be healthy, happy, safe, and nurtured as they transition from adolescence to adulthood. Unfortunately, not all young people in Maine have the essential support needed to successfully make this transition and reach their full potential. This report highlights the needs of an all too often hidden and underserved group of Maine’s young people. This group faces unique obstacles in the transition to adulthood because they are homeless or involved in the state’s foster care or juvenile justice systems. The report also shares some promising approaches underway in Maine that can be scaled up to help all young people succeed in school, at work, and in their relationships. Finally, it recommends how state leaders can act now to create better opportunities for young people and improve the odds that they can contribute to Maine’s future economic and civic success. View Resource
2017 Maine KIDS COUNT Data Book

2017 Maine KIDS COUNT Data Book

The 2017 KIDS COUNT Data Book urges policymakers not to back away from targeted investments that help U.S. children become healthier, more likely to complete high school and better positioned to contribute to the nation’s economy as adults. The Data Book also shows the child poverty rate in 2015 continued to drop, landing at 21%. In addition, children experienced gains in reading proficiency and a significant increase in the number of kids with health insurance. However, the data indicate that unacceptable levels of children living in poverty and in high-poverty neighborhoods persist. View Resource
Measures of Growth 2017

Measures of Growth 2017

The Maine Economic Growth Council and Maine Development Foundation are pleased to present Measures of Growth 2017, the 23rd annual report on the key indicators that measures Maine’s progress toward long-term economic growth and a high quality of life for all Maine people. View Resource
Social Service Programs that Foster Multiple Positive Outcomes

Social Service Programs that Foster Multiple Positive Outcomes

Social service programs are typically funded by agencies with a specific mission. Accordingly, evaluations also tend to have a narrow focus, be it drug use, crime, or teen pregnancy. However, research and practitioners’ experience indicate that varied problem behaviors often share root causes. This suggests that effective interventions may actually influence multiple outcomes, whether or not they are designed to do so. View Resource
Education Indicators for Maine

Education Indicators for Maine

The 2016 Education Indicators Report for Maine has been developed to explore and better understand Maine’s education pipeline from preschool through postsecondary education. The focus is on the 10 Indicators we have identified which we believe best measure Maine’s educational performance. The ten Indicators that we measure follow the path of each Maine child as he or she grows and learns. View Resource
National Results and Equity Collaborative

National Results and Equity Collaborative

The National Results and Equity Collaborative is a new and game changing approach to accelerating positive and equitable results for children, youth, families and communities throughout the United States. It enables networks of funders, technical assistance providers, intermediary organizations, public and private civic and service organizations, government and others to work together in greater alignment to help more vulnerable young people succeed from birth throughout adulthood. View Resource
NNIP's Guide to Starting a Local Data Intermediary

NNIP's Guide to Starting a Local Data Intermediary

The National Neighborhood Indicators Partnership (NNIP), coordinated by the Urban Institute, is a peer learning network of local organizations that share a mission to improve low-income neighborhoods by empowering local stakeholders to use data in planning, policymaking, and community building. Based on 20 years of NNIP experience, this guide describes the role of a local data intermediary, the process of identifying a home for the intermediary, and how to think about its initial fundraising and activities. The guide will help stakeholders think about the broader environment of community information and understand various aspects of establishing a local data intermediary.

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Performance Measurement to  Evaluation

Performance Measurement to Evaluation

Nonprofits are increasingly expected to use data and evidence to manage and improve their programs and to demonstrate that they are producing positive results for their clients. Two frameworks for using data and evidence are performance measurement and evaluation. This brief gives nonprofits and funders a basic overview of performance measurement and evaluation to help them assess which activities are beneficial for programs at particular stages of development. View Resource
The Opportunity Index

The Opportunity Index

The Opportunity Index is designed to provide a snapshot of what opportunity looks like at the state and county levels. The Index focuses on the conditions present in different communities and is designed to help local communities connect economic, academic, civic and other factors that support increased opportunity and economic mobility. View Resource
National Center for Children in Poverty

National Center for Children in Poverty

The National Center for Children in Poverty (NCCP) is one of the nation’s leading public policy centers dedicated to promoting the economic security, health, and well-being of America’s low-income families and children. NCCP uses research to inform policy and practice with the goal of ensuring positive outcomes for the next generation. They promote family-oriented solutions at the state and national levels. View Resource
The Assets and Opportunity Score Card for Maine

The Assets and Opportunity Score Card for Maine

The Assets & Opportunity Scorecard is a comprehensive look at Americans' financial security today and their opportunities to create a more prosperous future. It assesses the 50 states and the District of Columbia on 135 outcome and policy measures, which describe how well residents are faring and what states can do to help them build and protect assets. View Resource