Children First recently received a $20,000 grant from the Wilson-Wood Foundation to support Comprehensive Services for children and families living at-risk in Sarasota County. Comprehensive Services include early childhood education, nutrition, healthcare screenings, emotional and behavioral support, and family strengthening services for parents.
Because the average income of a Children First family is $14,000, they are left with extremely limited income and resources for education, food stability, and housing. Approximately 900 families received strengthening services from Children First in 2019 to help them break the generational cycle of poverty and achieve self-sufficiency.
“With an incredibly high percentage of the families enrolled living below the Federal Poverty Level of $21,720 for a family of three, funding from the Wilson-Wood Foundation is critical to combatting the systemic pressures of poverty, pressures which create an environment of chronic stress for both children and adults. We are deeply appreciative of the Wilson-Wood Foundation for their continued support of our community’s most vulnerable who cannot afford to be left behind,” says CEO Philip Tavill.
About Children First:
Founded in 1961 and ranked in the top 1% out of over 1,800 Head Starts nationwide, Children First strengthens children and families by improving the quality of their lives through a comprehensive approach to development, education, health, and well-being. At 15 sites throughout Sarasota County, Children First offers full-day preschool, infant and toddler care, and nutrition and health care assistance to children ages birth to five years old from low-income families. Through Children First, the children receive the social, emotional, and cognitive skills needed to enter kindergarten and elementary school on track. For more information, call (941) 953-3877 or go to childrenfirst.net.