Renee Koubiadis Works to End Poverty
An October 12, 2016 profile on NJSpotlight writes about Renee Koubiadis, Executive Director of the Anti-Poverty Network (APN) of New Jersey. Coleen O’Dea writes, “Growing up in Poverty Has Helped Shape Her Choice of Career.”
“Growing up in poverty has influenced Koubiadis’ views and her goals for the organization. For one, she said the state needs to raise the amount of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families benefits, formerly called welfare for families with children. ‘That benefit is at the same level as it was the year my family was leaving welfare,’ said Koubiadis. “It wasn’t enough then, and it’s not enough now.”
Koubiadis, 46 years old, lives in Florence, New Jersey with her daughter and husband. Prior to taking over the leadership of APN, Koubiadis worked for the Division of Youth and Family Services, the Citizens Campaign, and the National Association of Social Works’ New Jersey Chapter.
The Anti-Poverty Network of New Jersey (APN) is a diverse and growing network focused on preventing, reducing, and ending poverty in New Jersey.
Poverty impacts all aspects of society, and therefore all interested partners are welcomed to join and to participate in our collaborative change efforts. Through focus on empowerment of all anti-poverty stakeholders, from individuals to organizations, the network focuses on systemic change that can truly advance the fight against poverty.
On why it’s so difficult to end poverty, “Public perception is one problem. Koubiadis said her organization and others need to do a better job educating the public. ‘We really need to tell the story of who is poor and why they are poor,’ she said. ‘Too many people think that someone did something that put them in poverty. Systems create poverty.’”
But Koubiais voices her commitment that problem of poverty can and will be solved.
“We have a lot of people around the state committed to helping people who are struggling,” she added. “APN is made up of wonderful organizations committed to seeing an end to poverty.”
APN’s mission is to fight poverty in New Jersey by empowering partners, educating the community, and advocating for solutions. APN’s vision for success is a New Jersey where all residents have a realistic opportunity to meet their basic needs and contribute to the broader society, which will benefit from the full participation of all its members.