2Gen Peer Learning Cohort

The 2Gen Peer Learning Cohort is a network of child and family advocates committed to amplifying the two-generation (2Gen) approach, which builds family well-being by intentionally and simultaneously working with children and the adults in their lives. Guided by the work of Ascend at the Aspen Institute, the Cohort works to create an ecosystem of programs and services that support intergenerational economic opportunities for all families.


The 2Gen Peer Learning Cohort meets monthly. Meetings present a chance to learn more about the approach and engage in peer learning to deepen the understanding and practice of 2Gen, the whole family approach. During sessions, members will engage with other people across programs and services to explore ways to apply concepts, share ideas, foster collaborations, and improve our work.

Date:  Third Thursday of each month
9-11 a.m.
Itasca County Family YMCA (400 River Rd, Grand Rapids)
Admission: Free

Thursday, September 21, 2023, 9-11 a.m.
Thursday, October 19, 2023, 9-11 a.m.
Thursday, November 16, 2023, 9-11 a.m.
Thursday, December 21, 2023, 9-11 a.m.
Thursday, January 18, 2024, 9-11 a.m.


Becoming a member of the Cohort provides a special opportunity to learn from and collaborate with others around the Itasca-area communities who are committed to identifying, developing, and implementing 2Gen approaches.

Cohort Partner Organizations

  • Advocates for Family Peace
  • Boys & Girls Clubs of Grand Rapids and Greenway
  • Boys and Girls Club of the Leech Lake Area (Deer River chapter)
  • Deer River Independent School District 317
  • First Call 2-1-1
  • Grace House of Itasca County
  • Grand Rapids & Bigfork Independent School District 318 – Community Education, Project READ
  • Itasca County Family YMCA
  • Itasca County Habitat for Humanity
  • Itasca Youth for Christ
  • New Beginnings Pregnancy + Family Support
  • Niemala Mediation

Family Centered Guiding Principles

  • We empower families to set their own goals and make their own informed decisions.
  • We strive to understand each individual family and approach our relationship with them as a partnership.
  • We provide services to families within or across organizations based on their strengths, assets, interests and expressed needs.
  • We provide opportunities for families to be directly involved in an organization’s decision-making structure and will not make decisions without their input.
  • We provide opportunities for families to build social networks and ensure that our communities support families.
  • We work to reduce cultural and systemic barriers to family-centered practice.


Inclusive language conveys respect to all people, promotes belonging, and seeks to disrupt the social norms perpetuating injustice. Inclusive language avoids bias, steers clear of words and sayings that give offense or cause harm, and affirms multiple aspects of human identity. When organizations adopt inclusive language practices, it makes a difference both inside and out. Internally, it helps create a space where people can bring their full selves to the work of the organization, unlocking the potential of diverse teams. Externally, inclusive language models demonstrate a commitment to fairness, inclusion, and accessibility. Read more

2Gen approaches recognize whole family units – as families define themselves – to consider the variety of pathways for promoting positive, pragmatic, and effective outcomes for everyone. We work with families as experts and meaningfully engage parents and caregivers in designing policies and programs that affect them in order to develop holistic, integrated, and equity-focused solutions. Read more

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