What opportunity or problem did GRHF see?
In launching its Healthy Futures initiative to improve the health and wellness of children aged zero to eight, GRHF recognized the need for more information about early care and education services. By learning more about available options, GRHF hoped to understand how to build early childhood care into its overall child wellness strategy and funding priorities.
How did CCSI approach the work?
CCSI conducted a scan of early childhood education programs to identify promising practices, training and coaching opportunities, and policy changes needed to support whole child health. The scan included a review of a broad range of secondary data sources as well as interviews and focus groups with early childhood education experts, administrators, direct care staff, and parents of young children. Once CCSI’s report was complete, GRHF wanted to share the findings with the community and get additional perspective on equity in early childhood education. CCSI facilitated community conversations that led to new insights from providers, parents and funders.
What were the impacts of CCSI’s work?
GRHF knew that access to early childhood education is especially challenging for families living in poverty. GRHF’s work with CCSI became an opportunity to bring that lack of equity into focus by convening community conversations around this work. At the same time, GRHF was also hearing a need from organizations for training and coaching around social and emotional health and parent engagement. CCSI’s scan provided some high-level training, advocacy and coaching recommendations.
What were GRHF’s insights?
When GRHF began working with CCSI on the early childhood care scan, they didn’t know what results they would find. Throughout the process, the relationship with CCSI helped guide the research and move the process forward into conversations with community members and funders. Today, GRHF is using the results of the study to help shape future funding strategies around large-scale approaches to whole child health and equity.