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Early Childhood Advocacy Week 2021
Advocacy Week

Illinois Early Childhood Advocacy Week: Early Education is Essential

April 12 - 16, 2021

Sign up for receive updates from Start Early Illinois Policy on actions you can take throughout the week to tell your legislators that early education is essential.

Join Start Early, Illinois Action for Children and the Latino Policy Forum April 12-16 as we share opportunities for providers, parents, and caregivers to share with their legislators that early education is essential—now more than ever as we rebuild and recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Young child participating in 2019 Illinois Advocacy DayIllinois Early Childhood Advocacy Week (April 12-16) marks approximately one year into a pandemic that has deeply affected children, families, and early care and learning providers. Throughout the week, Start Early, Illinois Action for Children and the Latino Policy Forum will provide an opportunities for providers, parents, and caregivers to share with their legislators that early education is essential—now more than ever as we rebuild and recover from the COVID-19 pandemic. As we come together virtually to amplify the importance of early learning and care, we will also thank the early childhood field’s front line workers – child care providers, home visitors, doulas, and others – who have continued to support and provide for our youngest learners.

Sign Up to Receive Start Early’s Illinois Early Childhood Advocacy Week Action Alerts & We’ll Send You Opportunities to:

LEARN: Each day, our Illinois policy experts will bring you a deep-dive into the day’s focus area. Learn the key facts and messaging that are foundational to advocating for early learning and care.

WRITE: Contact your legislators and ask them to make early learning and care a priority in the Illinois state budget.

SHARE: Use our social media toolkit to share about the importance of investing in the early years on Facebook and Twitter—don’t forget to use #EarlyEdIsEssential!

DIALOGUE: Is your community group interested in hosting a dialogue with your state legislators about the importance of early learning and care? Contact us at Advocacy@StartEarly.org to learn more about our legislator dialogue toolkit.

Sign Up for Updates

We are excited that this year, Advocacy Week also coincides with Black Maternal Health Week and the 50th anniversary of the Week of the Young Child! We look forward to providing opportunities to learn about and advocate for our youngest learners and Black maternal health.

Early Childhood Advocacy Week, April 12-16, 2021

Advocacy Week Calendar

Find up to date actions to take during Illinois Early Childhood Advocacy Week!

Pre-Advocacy Week Opportunities

Check out these opportunities from our partners to help advocates get ready for Early Childhood Advocacy Week:

Watch the Recording, Advocacy 101 Webinar with the Latino Policy Forum

  • Our partners at the Latino Policy Forum and Illinois Action for Children teamed up to share advocacy fundamentals in preparation for Early Childhood Advocacy Week. Check out the recordings of the sessions in English and in Spanish 

April 8, Social Media Training

  • Early learning and are providers are a wealth of knowledge about what policy changes would best support them and the parents and families they serve. With that in mind, Purpose and Illinois Action for Children recently held a social media storytelling training designed to help amplify and elevate the critical work of the early childhood workforce. Register Now
  • Check out the webinar recording for social media tips and tricks, storytelling guidance and take away tools. (link coming soon)

Investing in the Early Years is Essential

  • LEARN: Read our blog about why investing in the early years is essential.
  • WRITE: Contact your legislators and ask them to make early learning and care a priority in the Illinois state budget. Take action now. 
  • SHARE: Use our social media toolkit to share about the importance of investing in the early years on Facebook and Twitter—don’t forget to use #EarlyEdIsEssential!
  • DIALOGUE: Is your community group interested in hosting a dialogue with your state legislators about investing in the early years? Contact us at Advocacy@startearly.org to receive support in setting up a dialogue with your legislator.

Community Voice is Essential

  • LEARN: Read our blog about why elevating and amplifying community voice is essential in early care and learning.
  • ATTEND Kindergarten Assessment for Early Learning Educators: Join The Illinois State Board of Education and Start Early, with generous support from the McCormick Foundation.

Register Now

  • WRITE: Contact your legislators and ask them to make early learning and care a priority in the Illinois state budget. Take action now. 
  • SHARE: Use our social media toolkit to share about the importance of community voice and advocacy on Facebook and Twitter—don’t forget to use #EarlyEdIsEssential!
  • DIALOGUE: Is your community group interested in hosting a dialogue with your state legislators about embedding community voice into early care and learning policies? Contact us at Advocacy@startearly.org to receive support in setting up a dialogue with your legislator.

Workforce is Essential

  • LEARN: Read our blog to hear how our appreciation for the early learning and care providers in our lives helps drive our advocacy for the workforce.
  • WRITE: Contact your legislators and ask them to make early learning and care a priority in the Illinois state budget. Take action now. 
  • SHARE: Use our social media toolkit to participate in a Twitter storm from 12:00-2:00 pm CST! Thank an early learning provider and advocate for the workforce on Facebook and Twitter—don’t forget to use #EarlyEdIsEssential!
  • DIALOGUE: Is your community group interested in hosting a dialogue with your state legislators to advocate for the needs of the early learning and care workforce? Contact us at Advocacy@startearly.org to receive support in setting up a dialogue with your legislator.

Health & Well-Being Are Essential

  • LEARN: Read our blog to learn more about why health and well-being are essential for children, families, and the early childhood workforce.
  • WRITE: Contact your legislators and ask them to make early learning and care a priority in the Illinois state budget. Take action now.
  • SHARE: Use our social media toolkit to share about the importance of health and well-being to children, families and providers on Facebook and Twitter—don’t forget to use #EarlyEdIsEssential!
  • DIALOGUE: Is your community group interested in hosting a dialogue with your state legislators to advocate for the health and well-being of children and families? Contact us at Advocacy@startearly.org to receive support in setting up a dialogue with your legislator.

Family Economic Supports Are Essential

  • LEARN: Read our blog to learn more about the economic supports that are essential to Illinois families.
  • WRITE: Contact your legislators and ask them to make early learning and care a priority in the Illinois state budget. Take action now.
  • SHARE: Use our social media toolkit to share about the importance of family economic supports on Facebook and Twitter—don’t forget to use #EarlyEdIsEssential!
  • DIALOGUE: Is your community group interested in hosting a dialogue with your state legislators to advocate for family economic supports? Contact us at Advocacy@startearly.org to receive support in setting up a dialogue with your legislator.
Make Your Voice Heard

Take Action: Contact Illinois Lawmakers

Make your voice heard during Illinois Early Childhood Advocacy Week! Tell Illinois legislators that early education is essential and we must invest more in the state’s youngest learners.

Ask Illinois Lawmakers: Invest in Early Learning & Care!

Join Start Early in asking the Illinois General Assembly to invest in the health and sustainability of our early care and education system.

Send a Message