Our Programs2021-07-29T10:14:23-05:00

Our Programs

Changing the system to better serve our children takes time—and there are children across America who can’t wait. Our programs work to change the odds for children right now.

For more than 45 years, the Children’s Defense Fund has been equipping new generations of advocates for children. We work directly with children and youth to empower them to excel and make a difference in their own lives and in their communities. We engage and train young leaders, faith communities, and local activists to seek justice for children. Every day, we build on our decades-long legacy by empowering communities, advocates, and children themselves to create the change our children urgently need.

CDF Freedom Schools

CDF Freedom Schools®

The CDF Freedom Schools® program empowers children to excel and believe in their ability to make a difference in themselves, their families, communities, country and world with hope, education and action.

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Beat the Odds

CDF Beat the Odds®

The CDF Beat the Odds® program honors outstanding high school students who have excelled academically and as leaders in their communities despite facing difficult circumstances in their lives.

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Learn more about Children's Sabbaths

Children’s Sabbath Celebration

The National Observance of the Children’s Sabbaths is an annual celebration that unites places of worship and all faiths across the nation in common commitment to improving children’s lives and working toward justice.

Learn about Children's Sabbaths
Samuel Dewitt Proctor Institute

CDF Proctor Institute

The CDF Samuel DeWitt Proctor Institute for Child Advocacy Ministry is an annual gathering of faith leaders, civil rights leaders, community organizers, seminarians, artists and youth committed to pursuing justice for our nation’s children.

Samuel Dewitt Proctor Institute

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The fight for children happens 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Make a monthly gift today to ensure the needs of children remain front and center. With your support, we will continue fighting nonstop to make sure our children’s voices are heard in the halls of power.