Children First, the exclusive provider of Head Start and Early Head Start services in Sarasota County, has recently received nearly $50,000 in support of our community’s most vulnerable children, birth to age 5, and their families.
The agency received $15,000 from the Eluned & Edward Russell Charitable Foundation through the Community Foundation of Sarasota County for The Challenge for Changing Lives, Children First’s 60th Anniversary challenge match campaign.
Grant funds that will also be matched by The Challenge include $15,000 from the Libertore Fund for Children, $5,000 from the Venice Golf & Country Club Foundation, and $4,000 from Paycom for scholarship support as well as $4,700 from the Plantation Community Foundation, $2,000 from Synovus in support of the Families First Institute, and $2,000 from Car Credit of Tampa as their featured nonprofit for the month of April.
The Challenge for Changing Lives is a $1,060,000 matching gift challenge led by Children First’s Diamond Circle members, a dedicated group of supporters leading the charge in advancing the mission of strengthening children and families together. Their goal is to inspire the community to join them in giving by matching all gifts, dollar for dollar, up to $1,060,000, throughout 2021 as the focal point of the agency’s overall annual fundraising efforts.
Scholarships support comprehensive services including early childhood education, nutrition, emotional and behavioral support, and family strengthening services for the most vulnerable children and families living in our community. By providing scholarships for full-day infant and toddler care and pre-school education, parents also receive the opportunity to strengthen their finances and ultimately achieve self-sufficiency.
The Families First Institute is an award-winning, family-focused initiative that offers comprehensive curricula to the community at-large focusing on child development, parenting strategies, career and personal growth, money management, and more.
“Access to a high-quality education and opportunities for future success in life are critical components of the Children First mission. In our 60th anniversary year, we are so thankful for the continued support of our community partners who believe so deeply in our crucial work of strengthening children and families together,” says President & CEO Philip Tavill.
To learn more about Children First, please visit www.childrenfirst.net/60th-anniversary/.
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 and cognitive skills needed to enter kindergarten and elementary school on track. For more information, call (941) 953-3877 or go to childrenfirst.net.