Grant to help group improve early learning


WALLA WALLA - The Walla Walla Valley Early Learning Coalition will spend the next year reaching out to parents, caregivers, kindergarten teachers, early learning professionals and community members as part of a $20,000 grant provided by Thrive by Five Washington.

Grant money will be used in part to host a series of community conversations between parents, care givers, early learning professionals and kindergarten teachers in an effort to promote smooth transitions between home, early learning settings and school, according to a news release. The coalition will also support a new campaign from Thrive by Five called "Love. Talk. Play." It is expected to launch in early 2011.

The Early Learning Coalition's mission is to mobilize the community to support parents as their children's first teacher and to improve access to high quality early learning opportunities for all young children. The group is working to strengthen early learning locally, and to coordinate services for all families with young children in the region.

"There are nearly 40 organizations and agencies represented on the Coalition Advisory Team," said ELC program manager Samantha Bowen in a statement. "By working collaboratively, we are able to reach more families to prepare children for school and for life. In today's economic climate, it is imperative that we break down the silos that keep us from working together to serve families with young children. By sharing a common vision and implementing identified strategies, the coalition will improve the outcomes for all children and families living in our community."


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