Early Childhood Education Funding Push Underway
The Lincoln Community Foundation, in partnership with numerous other groups and organizations, will host the first ever Lincoln Littles Giving Day on February 12, Abraham Lincoln’s birthday.
The effort, structured much like the annual “Give To Lincoln” day, will raise funds for tuition assistance, to allow more children in need to access quality early childhood education. The fund is a result of the Prosper Lincoln Early Childhood community agenda, which began developing after the release of the first “Lincoln Vital Signs” report in 2014. That report shocked many readers by documenting a higher than expected level of poverty in Lincoln.
Gifts to the fund can be directed to LincolnLittles.org.
In making the announcement, Community Foundation President Barbara Bartle stressed that high-quality child care helps children develop the range of skills necessary for success in school and beyond. It was also pointed out that The National Chamber of Commerce Foundation says that quality early childhood education is important for today’s workforce as well as preparing the future workforce.
“We are thrilled to bring this giving day to the Lincoln community to fill this important need,” said Barbara Bartle, President of the Lincoln Community Foundation. “We know that helping low-income families access high-quality early childhood education is good for Lincoln’s schools, workforce and, most importantly, our
little ones. It means a lot for Lincoln’s future.”
The effort was also endorsed by Mayor Chris Beutler. “Providing our kids with quality learning opportunities in their first few years sets the stage for success throughout their lives,” said Mayor Beutler. “It’s the first step in preparing them to be our future leaders. Lincoln Littles Giving Day will help to build stronger kids, stronger families and a stronger community.”
Nine early childhood education providers have pre-qualified to receive funding to provide tuition assistance to low-income families including CEDARS, The Children’s Place, Community Action – Head Start, Educare Lincoln, Fingerprints Child Development Center, Kids First Inc., KinderCare Learning Center, St. Mark’s Preschool/KIDZONE and World of Knowledge Child Development Center. Additional providers may receive grants as soon as they meet the qualifications.
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