Funding the Next Generation, founded in 2015, was the nation’s first initiative to promote and fight for local public funding measures for services to children, youth and their families – funds like San Francisco’s Children and Youth Fund and the Oakland Kids First Fund.

ALL our children and youth deserve to be safe, loved, and given ample opportunities to reach for their dreams.  That means communities, like families, must ensure that sufficient resources are spent uplifting their children.  Yet right now, public budgets are way out of balance.  For our most disadvantaged young people particularly, our elected officials have chosen to spend much more money on punishment and repairing problems than on providing opportunity and preventing problems.  Too many children are denied the chance to develop to their potential.

The mission of Funding the Next Generation is to increase public funding that provides opportunities for all our children and youth.  With the belief that action starts at the local level, we help create city and county policies that will fund and sustain services such as childcare, preschool, after school and youth development programs, career preparation and summer jobs, health care, recreation, parent support and community schools.

We know that rhetoric and policies on paper are meaningless unless resources follow. Sadly, getting enough resources for children and youth is often a battle.  Funding the Next Generation helps win those battles – in city and county budgets, and at the ballot box.

The crisis that was created by Covid 19 has revealed the limitations in our services for children and hopefully taught us more about what is important in our lives.   As our country recovers, it is essential that we not only return to what we provided our children prior to the virus, but that we strengthen that safety net of support. As communities re-establish their priorities, we must use this as an opportunity to ensure that children and youth are front of mind.  We must not respond to the fears that could follow, but to our community’s highest aspirations for the next generation.


This initiative was founded and is directed by Margaret Brodkin, who is nationally recognized for her pioneering work and tough advocacy in building a constituency for children and successfully fighting for hundreds of millions of dollars in public funding for children and youth services in San Francisco.

Funding the Next Generation works with coalitions of advocates, public officials, non-profit agencies, parents and youth throughout California – and has sparked action around the country.

If you want to be part of a movement that helps the children in your community look to the future with excitement and hope, join us!  As an expanding learning network of local coalitions, we look forward to sharing our resources, experience and expertise with you.

“Margaret Brodkin is the Johnny Appleseed of children’s funds.”
– Larry Tramutola, political consultant for dozens of winning campaigns for school funding, progressive policies and the strategist behind the historic soda tax victories in Berkeley, San Francisco and Oakland, California.

Check out our 2020-21 newsletters with valuable information about our work: 

  • March 2020 – CA Statewide meeting on future of dedicated revenue measures, New leaders, March election results
  • September 2020 – Court victories and ballot stories
  • December 2020 – Summary of local revenue successes in CA
  • Tribute 2020 to Marian Wright Edelman and her role in the Children’s Budget Movement
  • February 2021 – Lessons learned in 2020 and advice for 2021
  • May 2021 – Features on California court decisions on voter thresholds and what’s in ARP for kids
  • June 2021 – New opportunities, ideas for ballot measures, updates on LA and Richmond, arguments for set-asides

LATEST TOOLS created by Funding the Next Generation:



GAME CHANGING NEWS ABOUT VOTER INITIATIVES AND RECENT COURT DECISIONS – After three appellate court decisions upholding the right of citizens to pass local revenue measures by majority vote, no decisions holding otherwise, and an April California Supreme Court refusal to hear an appeal from anti-tax groups, Funding the Next Generation is recommending local groups can move forward with voter-initiated children and youth fund measures.  This is a major step for democracy!

VIDEO AND SLIDES FROM APRIL 28 WEBINAR (Wait 20 seconds for video to start and also for slides to download.)

Examples of ARP “asks”


Children’s Funding Project is our national partner and fiscal sponsor.> Learn more

Map of children and youth funds throughout the country

Catch up on Past Webinars

Local Funding Measures For Kids

Strategies and prospects for 2022 and beyond


Moderator: Margaret Brodkin, founder/director Funding the Next Generation; Featuring: David Metz, President of FM3 and Nicole Derse, Founding Principal of 50+1 Strategies;


How Crisis Created Change in Fresno's Approach to Public Health

Fresno COVID-19 Equity project


Moderator: Linda Gleason, Director, Cradle to Career Partnership; Sponsor: Margaret Brodkin, founder/director Funding the Next Generation;


Redefining Public Safety to include Youth Development

A first step to changing local budget priorities


Moderator: Margaret Brodkin, founder/director Funding the Next Generation; Featuring: Panel of community leaders including elected officials and youth



Additional Webinars


Learn More


Investing in kids in a challenging year: Learning from polls by Dave Metz, FM3, 12/20. Download here

Funding The Next Generation

California’s First Children’s fund

Hear Margaret Brodkin tell the inspiring Little Red Wagon Story about the winning campaign to pass the San Francisco Children’s Fund – now over $100 Million each year.