Jubilee History

Children’s Jubilee Fund began with the grass roots effort of 25 concerned individuals who were working, living, and serving in the city of Philadelphia.


Children’s Jubilee Fund was the product of five open consultations in Philadelphia beginning in November 1992. They were convinced that the 70 Christian schools in the Philadelphia area could have a major impact for God’s glory on the next generation of urban children. If the funds could be enlisted, hundreds and even thousands of economically distressed parents could have the chance to give their son or daughter an education both worthy of the name and built on the knowledge of the Living God. Unfortunately, at this time most Christian schools were being forced to significantly increase tuition to survive–thereby excluding the very families most in need of the school’s ministry. Broadly, the Children’s Jubilee Fund mission reflects the consensus which developed at these meetings.

This effort led to the formation of an organizing association early in 1993. This association eventually formed a nominating committee, which led to the election of Children’s Jubilee Fund’s Board in mid-year 1994. The Children’s Jubilee Fund operated as a start-up program under the auspices of the Philadelphia Leadership Foundation until the completion of its 501(c)(3) incorporation until 1997. Dr. James Petty was elected the chairman of the Children’s Jubilee Fund Board. Dr. Petty has worked with and supported various urban Christian schools and ministries for the past 25 years. He was an urban pastor (1968-1982), a co-founder and chairman of Spruce Hill Christian School (1978-1992) and serves on the board of the Center for Urban Theological Studies.

In addition, the founding board was composed of eight other committed Christians known for their knowledge of the communities that Jubilee serves and their experience with the development and education of socioeconomically disadvantaged urban youth.