The Wilson-Wood Foundation has provided Children First with a $10,000 grant to bolster the agency’s mental health services and support the emotional well-being of Sarasota County’s most vulnerable young children and families.
“The emotional and behavioral support we are able to provide greatly reduces the barriers our parents face in getting their children the services they need to thrive,” says CEO Philip Tavill. “We’re grateful for the Wilson-Wood Foundation’s unwavering commitment to the success of the entire family. Over the past 15 years, they have invested nearly $250,000 into the healthy development of our children and families through our comprehensive programming.”
The grant will have an immediate impact as the need for services continues to increase due to the ongoing pandemic. Early exposure to adverse experiences in life can negatively influence brain development, fundamentally altering a child’s ability to learn and grow.
“Our ability to provide on-site mental health support and individualized care for those we serve is critical to the overall health and well-being of our children and families. The Wilson-Wood Foundation’s support allows us to continue building a healthy social-emotional climate not only in our classrooms, but at home with our families,” says Early Childhood Mental Health Specialist Arianne Kopacz, RMHC.
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.