Building an Early Childhood System

There are about 55,000 children from birth to age five living in Denver. Twenty-five percent of them are experiencing poverty. Their mothers, fathers, grandparents and extended families are working hard to support them.

Their families take them to one place to get their well-child checks by a physician. They go to another place for child care and early learning. If they have a dentist, they go somewhere else for that, and if they get extra help for physical or behavioral needs, they go yet somewhere else.

Boy building with blocks

The thousands of early childhood professionals in Denver who care for them work in separate fields, are trained in specific areas, and spend most of their days serving children while navigating complex organizational, policy and financing systems.

As a result, professionals who work in these specific fields – what we call domains – of early childhood, are often isolated from each other and disconnected from resources that can serve a child’s learning, health and support to the family.

This is where Denver’s Early Childhood Council comes in.

Early childhood councils were created through legislation to create a seamless early childhood system that improves access to high quality services for all children. Our role is to serve as Denver’s early childhood hub, making connections between each child, service and sector. We call this Early Childhood Systems Building.

We have a birds-eye view on the work that is taking place for young children across the city. Our job is to do two key things:

1) Elevate the quality of care for Denver’s young children

2) Connect services, resources and professionals together on behalf of families and children