Recent research and advocacy efforts have led funders, politicians, and the business community to agree that the first years of a child's life can determine the rest of their development. Across ideological divides, there is consensus that investing early makes sense—it helps children prepare for successful futures and creates a high return on investment of public dollars.
We have created this short guide, featuring examples and how-to's based on our work with more than a dozen foundations working to make progress in the early care and education space. The guide highlights 7 principles to help funders understand and anticipate the challenges and opportunities of supporting early care and education, including practical advice on how to:
- Inclusively identify and constructively connect the many actors that provide quality care and education to children and their families.
- Navigate challenges that arise from a sector filled with different approaches and business models.
- Balance long-term strategies and outcome measures with short-term wins and progress markers.