Washington DC’s Baby Bonds will provide children of the city’s poorest families with up to $25,000 when they reach adulthood.
Baby Bonds aim to narrow Washington’s wealth gap
Aaliyah Manning’s dreams of becoming a psychologist ended abruptly during her freshman year at Potomac State in West Virginia when the cost of continuing her education became overwhelming.
“The money just wasn’t there,” said Manning, 25. “I knew I wasn’t going to finish so I just had fun.”
After a year, she was back in the nation’s capital working fast food jobs. Now she lives largely on public assistance in a two-bedroom apartment with her boyfriend, his mother and his nine-year-old daughter from another relationship. She still has student debt and there’s a baby boy on the way.
She sees a brighter future for that baby, thanks to a landmark social program being pioneered in Washington. Called “Baby Bonds,” it will provide children of the city’s poorest families with up to $25,000 when they reach adulthood — for use on multiple purposes, including education.