Over the past few years, legislators and state administrators have noticed an alarming trend: a substantial decline in the number of child care providers. How much of a decline? Well, according to the National Center on Early Childhood Quality Assurance, the number of small, licensed family child care homes fell by 35% between 2011 and 2017.
At Child Care Aware® of America, we understand the importance of translating research findings into actions. Each year, our network of passionate advocates use our research to advocate for child care policies that increase access to affordable, high-quality child care. This research drives public dialogue on the issue and informs policymakers and advocates in their work. The US and the High Price of Child Care is no different in its ability to support advocacy for change.
I'm Tricia Howland, the Director of Family & Community Engagement at Brightside Up, Inc. I’ve been at the agency for 20 years helping parents find child care, engaging in community events and facilitating family workshops. Vroom has been an exciting addition to the work we do at the Brightside Up, Inc. The Brightside Up agency was one of the first ten Child Care Resource and Referral agencies (CCR&R) to become an ambassador in a pilot project of the Child Care Aware® of America Vroom Partnership initiative.
By bringing Vroom to the Capital District area of Albany, New York, we were able to share the brain building benefits of play with the community we serve. It has allowed us to boost family engagement and provide information on the importance of relationship building, all while supporting the early years of a child’s development.
Brain development is a complex process involving chemical and electrical interactions. We now have decades of research describing how learning occurs and how brains develop. We have equipment that allows us to watch the brain in action and we now know about synaptic pruning.
None of that really matters to a mom who just wants to do the best she can to help her child thrive.
None of that really matters to a dad who lives for the moments that he sees his child’s eyes light up in wonder. What matters to them is that they can do something to help their child learn, grow and prosper – to fulfill the promise that exists between parent and child from the moment of birth.
That’s where Vroom comes in.
The 2019 Leadership Institute has come to an end, and we are in full planning mode for our 2020 Symposium – Breakthrough Barriers, Breakout Solutions on May 3 - 6 in Crystal City, Virginia. But before we put the 2019 Leadership Institute to bed, I wanted to share some of the highlights from the week.
The Child Care Resource Network (TCCRN) is the child care resource and referral (CCR&R) agency housed within Right Steps Child Development Centers. We provide services to family, ECE and OST programs, and the communities of 12 counties in northwest Indiana. TCCRN, in partnership with Right Steps Child Development Centers, was selected as one of ten child care resource and referral agencies in the nation to serve as a Vroom Ambassador. As a selected agency, we have strategically embedded Vroom brain-building tips and materials into our local community.