RISE knows there are great needs in the community, especially for children and teens. Currently, 1 in 6 children ages 5 and under are living in poverty in Dane County. Many local 4-year olds are not ready for success in kindergarten. 20 percent of all Dane County children face mental health challenges. A growing number of children are facing psychiatric hospitalization or residential treatment. Emergency respite for parents and caregivers has become even more important as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and school uncertainty.



How Do We RISE?

RISE is one of the largest providers of early child development and education programs, mental health services and respite care for children and families in Dane County. We serve more than 3,300 people annually. Our programs focus on the following key areas:

  • Strengthening family stability and caregiver-child attachment
  • Early childhood education
  • Emergency & scheduled childcare/respite care (the only respite center of it’s kind in Dane County, and only one of three of it’s kind in the state of Wisconsin)
  • Mental health evaluation & care
  • Wrap-around stabilization & support

RISE uses a systemic approach and collaboration to improve services to families. RISE partners strategically with more than 100 other community organizations to deliver wrap-around service, treatment, intervention and education for families and children. Our organization provides wraparound services at home to more than 100 children annually.  Without these services, those children would be hospitalized or sent to residential treatment centers.  The systemic approach we use and collaboration with community partners allows for an annual savings of $8.8 million for tax payers and health care systems.

Office Rendering


In addition to providing wrap-around services, RISE programs have impacted the community in a number of positive ways:

  • RISE’s early childhood education program graduates 157 children (87 percent of those enrolled) each year ready for kindergarten success.
  • RISE provides emergency and scheduled childcare for more than 1,700 children each year.
  • RISE provided mental health services for nearly 1,000 children and adults last year.
  • RISE conducts more than 600 court-ordered mental health evaluations per year, diverting many from the criminal justice system into treatment services.
  • RISE partners actively with local employers who provide nearly 7000 volunteer hours per year.
  • RISE’s Respite Center received the 2020 Innovative & Exemplary Respite Service Award from ARCH National Respite Network & Resource Center, making it one of only seven selected from throughout the U.S. as a national model for respite centers.



“United Way of Dane County’s efforts with RISE in new 2Gen collaborations and the Early Childhood Zones have shown that how services are delivered for families matters. We also know place matters. We thrilled that RISE will soon consolidate their entire staff and programming in one location. This means that young children and their parents will be able to access vital services more easily — all in one place. Co-locating early childhood education and mental health services has never been more important than right now during the COVID-19 pandemic. RISE is already a key partner in United Way’s community-wide early childhood initiatives, and this building project will generate even better outcomes for the children and families of Dane County. “- Renee Moe, CEO, United Way of Dane County


See What Community Partners Are Saying…

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