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April 10, 2007

United Way Celebrates Month of the Young Child and 10 years of ‘School Readiness’ in New Haven

April 10, 2007

Media Contact: Alyssa Allaben
203.772.2010, Ext.211
Cell: 860.250.0300

School Readiness Council Hosts ‘Celebration of Early Childhood Care and Education’ at City Hall

On Saturday, April 21 United Way will join over 50 different community organizations gathered at New Haven City Hall in a ‘Celebration of Early Childhood Care and Education’. The event is just one of many being planned to commemorate the “Month of The Young Child” and will highlight all that goes into making our children successful, healthy and happy. The Celebration, organized by the New Haven School Readiness Council, will feature live music, performances, storytelling, kids’ activities and crafts, information tables about family, health, child care, development and school readiness resources as well as many prizes, free books and food. The event is free and open to the public at large but families with young children in particular are encouraged to attend.

Governor Rell has declared April the “Month of The Young Child” in Connecticut in hopes of encouraging all citizens to make an investment in early childhood education and development.
United Way has been a long-time supporter of programs and policies dedicated to providing children and youth appropriate tools, supports and opportunities to become strong individuals and successful members of our community. For example, through Success By 6®, United Way’s regional initiative to ensure that more children come to school ready to learn, over $800,000 has been invested in Greater New Haven to enhance the quality of preschool programs and increase parent engagement.

Additionally, in September 2006, United Way of Greater New Haven organized a bi-lingual community forum on state plans for early childhood education with keynote speaker Dr. Janice M. Gruendel, Senior Advisor on Early Childhood to Governor Rell. “During the event I presented the Governor’s proposed framework to parents, educators, business leaders and childcare providers. There was also time built into the forum to capture these peoples’ responses and opinions and bring them back to the Governor,” recounts Gruendel. “This input was invaluable to the administration, and I commend United Way on its efforts and leadership around early care and education.”

The Celebration of Early Childhood Care and Education will not only pay tribute to Month of The Young Child but it will also mark the 10-year anniversary of the School Readiness program. In 1997 School Readiness Councils (SRCs) were created by state law to increase local community involvement in decisions about early care and education. SRCs are responsible for advising the Mayor and Superintendent about how to increase the quantity and quality of child care for young children in their communities.

As a member of the New Haven School Readiness Council, United Way of Greater New Haven is pleased to join in the April 21st festivities at City Hall. United Way will have representatives giving out information and talking to families about our Success By 6, Born Learning and 2-1-1 infoline resources as well as helping to facilitate fun children’s activities related to the ABC’s of School Readiness, an educational campaign funded by United Way of Greater New Haven, New Haven School Readiness Council, New Haven Free Public Library/Fair Haven Branch, WTNH News Channel 8, the Fair Haven Community Health Center, the Community Foundation for Greater New Haven, CT Voices for Children, and the Connecticut Children’s Museum.

For more information about event details and history please contact Denise Duclos,
Project Director, New Haven School Readiness Council at 203.946.7875 or

About United Way:
United Way brings together the caring power of our community to create measurable, sustainable change and to improve lives. To do this we: help identify our region's greatest needs and best opportunities for change; raise dollars and invest those dollars for results; connect people to their caring through volunteer opportunities.

More information about United Way of Greater New Haven's community leadership and how you can help can be found at www.uwgnh.org.


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