Valuing ALL of Our Children
At The Children’s Agenda we believe there is no such thing as someone else’s child. As a community, we have a fundamental obligation to ensure the well-being of all children. Government has a role to play, in large part through how we allocate state funds.
In New York we are in the midst of the annual state budget process. In January Governor Hochul announced her Executive budget proposal. Her proposals reflect a vision of how state government can work for children and families. However, the size and scope of the challenges New York families face require more than mere ambition. They require bold action.
As constituents and leaders in the community, you are positioned to influence the budget. Check out our quick, 2-page summary of the Executive budget proposal. Then contact your Assemblymember and State Senator. Impress upon them that New York children need them to:
If you have any questions about specific budget areas, please contact our lead staff for that area:
Expanding the Table
During budget season, The Children’s Agenda is not only at the table with legislators and policymakers – we also are expanding the table to make sure parents have a seat. In February we organized the Finger Lakes region’s participation in the Empire State Campaign for Child Care Advocacy Days. More than 800 parents, providers and advocates participated statewide in a virtual rally and legislative visits, including five meetings with Monroe County legislators.
At the same time, the Kids Can’t Wait state coalition organized parents and providers to meet with legislators about solving the problem of long waitlists for Early Intervention services and specialized Preschool Special Education programs.
All the while, local advocacy around the Rochester City School District budget is ramping up. The VIPs (“Very Invested Parents”) advocacy group, facilitated by TCA’s Carmen Torres, is in the process of meeting with each of the Commissioners to advocate for allocating more funds to mental health supports in schools. Hear one of the powerful stories from a Rochester mom and grandmother using her voice to advocate for Rochester’s children.
If you are a parent or caregiver and want to get involved with advocating for change, consider joining one of our parent groups.
Remarkable Win for Child Care
This month saw a remarkable win for children and parents in Monroe County when County Executive Adam Bello announced four major changes to the county’s child care assistance program that will make child care affordable for potentially more than 7,500 children in Monroe County:
Driven by parents’ stories of their struggles to afford quality care, The Children’s Agenda has long advocated for this kind of expanded access to child care assistance. These changes will make child care assistance more flexible and affordable and they keep struggling providers – many of which are small, woman-owned businesses operating on razor thin margins – open to serve families. We commend County Executive Bello and his administration for responding to our community’s needs and making Monroe County a leader on child care in New York state.
Investing in quality, affordable child care now yields returns many times over by supporting the health, education and lifelong success of our children. As the recent policy brief from the Center for American Progress found, “major child care investments pay for themselves through a range of benefits, including improved child and family health, bolstered educational outcomes, and economic recovery.”
Watch the full press conference -- including remarks from parent Kizzie Waye, child care provider Bridget Shumway, and Larry Marx of The Children’s Agenda -- here.
This month Raising Rochester features two strong voices for supporting children of all ages in their development.
Tina Carney is a parent advocate in Rochester and Monroe County. She shares her experience trying to get her young children the services they need, describes how she got involved as a parent leader, and details how child serving systems need to better engage and empower parents. Listen here.
Isaiah Santiago is a busy senior at the School of the Arts and a passionate youth advocate. He and Pete discuss Isaiah’s current pursuits and his perspectives on important issues, including what kinds of supports teenagers are looking for from adults and the community. Listen here.
TCA In The News
Monroe County Looking to Help Residents Pay for Child Care, News10
Bello Announces Enhancements to the County’s Child Care Subsidy Program, Genesee Sun
Thank You To Our Late January/February Donors
Ms. Jen Cathy - Ms. Meredith Dragon - The Hallowell Fund at The Rochester Area Community Foundation - Dr. Ernest F. Krug and Ms. Sarah Krug - - Ms. Sarah Mittiga - Mr. Joe Simson - Mr. Paul Tremblay and Dr. Jennifer West - Mr. Tracy Walker and Mrs. Karen Walker
Sustaining the work we do together is only a click away. Making a monthly donation to The Children's Agenda supports our efforts to help children who are vulnerable because of poverty, racism, health inequities and trauma.
The Children's Agenda1 S. Washington StreetSuite 120Rochester, NY 14614United States
If you believe you received this message in error or wish to no longer receive email from us, please (Unsubscribing is not supported in previews).
The Children’s Agenda advocates for effective policies and drives evidenced-based solutions for the health, education and success of children. We are especially committed to children who are vulnerable because of poverty, racism, health inequities and trauma.