The CDF Beat the Odds® (BTO) program honors outstanding high school students who have excelled academically and as leaders in their communities despite facing difficult circumstances in their lives. Started in 1990, the program identifies and honors remarkable young people and supports them to become future leaders. Their powerful stories of resilience, courage, determination, and hope inform CDF’s efforts to change the odds for all children and serve as a reminder that we cannot afford to give up on any child; the potential for greatness lives in all children regardless of their background or circumstance.
The program is held each year in California, Washington, D.C., Texas, Minnesota, New York, and Ohio. Not only do these awards events celebrate the scholarship recipients, they demonstrate that behind each successful child is at least one caring adult. They also are meant to inspire community leaders and citizens who want to help children struggling to overcome adversity. CDF encourages you to attend one of these events and learn more about how you can help support outstanding high school students.
Explore a program near you!
If you don’t live in one of the six cities where CDF hosts Beat the Odds celebrations, there are still many ways you can support the program. Please contact BTO@childrensdefense.org for more information.