Getting Ahead in a Just-Gettin'-By World

What is Getting Ahead?
Getting Ahead in a Just-Gettin’-By World is a 16-20 week curriculum offering step-by-step life planning lessons while exposing the hidden rules of economic class culture.  It is designed to teach families and individuals who are experiencing poverty how they can create the path to a stable, secure future for their family.  The Getting Ahead workbook is based on Philip DeVol's Getting Ahead in a Just-Gettin'-by-World: Building Your Resources for a Better Life.  Individuals who want to join the Circles family graduate from this class to become Circle Leaders, and we celebrate this incredible accomplishment at our annual Getting Ahead Graduation. 
Getting Ahead Graduation
Mental Model
How Getting Ahead is Delivered
Getting Ahead is presented as a discussion. It is a gathering of people with common goals: to study poverty; to develop a better understanding of how poverty impacts themselves and their community; and to create a self-directed plan to work their way out of poverty. With these goals in mind, the participants,called "investigators", develop mental models to enhance and reinforce the materials reviewed in each session.

Benefits of Getting Ahead
Investigators meet once a week for two hours to analyze the world around them. During this investigation into poverty,  participants learn to identify and recognize the hidden rules of the middle class.
Participants are paid $10.00 an hour for their time and contributions.  Free child care and an evening meal are provided during all Getting Ahead sessions. 
The Circles Initiative is dedicated to supporting everyone working to 'Get Ahead', and these benefits help to eliminate barriers that might otherwise not allow individuals to attend. 

Getting Ahead Graduates
When a class completes the 16 to 20 week Getting Ahead curriculum, we go all out to celebrate the achievement. Investigators' hard work and planning is recognized during a formal Graduation Ceremony attended by peers and community representatives.

 Proud Graduates 
To date, Getting Ahead has 190 graduates, plus 10 teens who have successfully completed Teen Getting Ahead. Each graduate now has the opportunity to become Circle Leaders, where they continue the journey out of poverty. Congratulations to all of the Investigators who have graduated. May you join the growing numbers of Getting Ahead Graduates using the knowledge and resources needed to finally get ahead!

Circle Leaders
A Getting Ahead graduate who has developed a plan for a stable, secure future for their family and is working to escape poverty becomes a Circle Leader. These leaders are matched with 2-5 volunteer Allies, who offer their support and friendship. Circle Leaders guide their new circle of support.
Want Your Chance to Get Ahead?
Getting Ahead classes are offered in Dubuque twice per year.  Do you want to get ahead or know someone who does?  Contact Ermina Soler, Circles Coach for more information at 563-589-4230, or email us.

Getting Ahead Brochure

Getting AheadTM Copyright by DeVoll & Associates, LLC and is presented in partnership with aha! Process, Inc.
Bridges Out of Poverty: Strategies for Professionals and Communities (R. Payne, P. DeVol, T. Smith, 2001). Copyright by aha! Process, Inc and is presented in partnership with aha! Process, Inc.