Press Release Archive

SSN Back at the Anti-Poverty Summit

On September 12–13, 2012, Denver Street School founder and executive director Tom Tillapaugh joined with other grassroots leaders from across the country for an Antipoverty Summit on Capitol Hill to discuss their effective efforts to address the needs of foster children, youth violence, financial responsibility, and the absence of marriage in many needy communities.

The summit was hosted by the Center for Neighborhood Enterprise and the Heritage Foundation. The ministries that were in attendance all believe that successful strategies to overcome poverty and social breakdown revolve around relationships and focus on restoring community, and that individuals who are successful in life transformation accept responsibility for their actions and do not blame others for the circumstances of their lives.

The first day of the summit was held at the Heritage Foundation headquarters. The evening wrapped up with a reception in the US Capitol where the attendees had the opportunity to meet like minded congressmen including Steve Southerland (FL), Joe Pitts (PA), Jim Jordan (OH), Allen West (FL), and many others.

On Thursday morning, the attendees held a working session with these members of Congress. Tillapaugh was one of five leaders asked to address the group. In addition to presenting the Street School Movement, he was tasked with delineating how Congress could help our causes. Following is what he said:

“You see here many incredible people doing very tough and life changing work with our nation’s most needy and challenging individuals, often under very strenuous conditions and little recompense. How can you help us? We do not expect federal funding, But we need:
1. Your recognition- Come by and see these ministries in action. Get to know us.
2. Your advocacy- Tell others about us; champion our causes when it is appropriate and helpful.
3. Your facilitation- Encourage legislation which will make our work easier, and help us not to be impeded by policies which will make our work more difficult.
4. And your encouragement- That is often in short supply in the trenches on the front line.”

In his final remarks, Congressman Southerland referred to and quoted from Tillapaugh’s remarks in his call to action for his fellow legislators.

Following this meeting, a press conference was held in the Capitol courtyard and the summit was adjourned. The Summit was an excellent opportunity for Congress and others to learn more of Street Schools and many other wonderful ministries helping our nation’s most needy people.

On November 13, 2013, Tom was again asked to participate in the Second Annual Anti-Poverty Summit at the US Capitol hosted by the Heritage Foundation. This was a private, action-oriented gathering of researchers, policymakers and implementers, expert practitioners, communicators, and philanthropists seeking to overcome poverty and social breakdown in America through effective application of conservative principles.