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Legacy Builders Program

The Legacy Builders Program is an education program that will allow impoverished and low-income earners to learn life skills with the goal of breaking the cycle of poverty and creating a better future. Participants in the program are organized into cohorts and take courses over the course of six months. At the end of the program, they complete a capstone project, where they identify issues within their own community and come up with a solution to solve that issue. This program will be for Illinois residents.

Phase 1 - Research

During this time we conducted primary and secondary research about the effects of generational poverty and possible solutions. Throughout our research, we were confronted with the comprehensiveness of poverty and its effects. In order to make things manageable we set several criteria to focus efforts. Volunteer, Yifan Hu was instrumental in developing a geographical map based on the 2020 US Census data to highlight the impoverished communities we should focus on.

Critera: Population > 30,000 | Poverty rate > 20%

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There are 2 pages to this app:

  1. Select areas given criteria: this is where you can select a racial group, a threshold for population in that group, and a threshold for poverty level in that group, to get a map of zipcodes meeting your criteria.

  2. A closer look at select areas: once you’ve explored the zip codes on the first page, you may have some zip codes in mind and want to know more about them. On this page, you can enter a zip code to get the corresponding city and county, as well as demographic information such as age, gender, and race/ethnicity distributions in this area.


From our research, we identified the need for education as a solution to empower our target demographic. We saw the same educational needs throughout various communities, such as financial literacy, health, and wellness.

Phase 2 - Development

In this current phase, we have been focused on developing curriculums and the infrastructure needed to support learners. We were selected by J.P. Morgan Chase to be a part of their Code for Good challenge and Force for Good program. During Code for Good, teams of developers were challenged to create a prototype learning management system that will support the Legacy Builders program. From there we are now working with the Force for Good team to take our idea and bring it to life!

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Code for Good Challenge - Building an LMS for Refined and Refreshed Inc.

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Ralph Monroe (founder) with Force for Good team

Generational Poverty Research

We are committed to researching the causes of intergenerational transmission of poverty to gain insight into the causes and effects of the cycle of poverty. Also, to understand possible solutions to helping individuals and communities break the cycle of poverty.

Image by Dan Meyers
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