While many of us are digging out our sidewalks and scraping ice off our windshields, construction is moving forward at full pace in Phoenix -- thank goodness for that southwest climate!
Since our last update, we've been hard at work making the multitude of decisions requisite in opening a center and school of this impact -- everything from carpet and paint, to the play structures and learning modules available to Educare's children and families, to our newest news: the selection of Educare Arizona's Executive Director. We're excited to be bringing on board one of the country's passionate, committed voices in early learning, and working with this soon-to-be-publicly-announced individual to bring great things to bear on our communities, both locally and nationally.
Late this fall, I had the opportunity to visit the newly-opened Educare of Seattle at White Center. Together with members of the Bounce Learning Network, I watched children operate on a learning environment created with the best of what the available science tells us to offer. Having now visited Educare centers in Miami, Omaha, and Seattle, I can't wait to have Educare's excellence at play in the Valley of the Sun(s).
The Steve Nash Foundation has also been working to make supporting Educare as convenient and rewarding as possible. Giveback.org/steve offers e-commerce opportunities to support both Educare Arizona and the Steve Nash Foundation, globalgiving.org has this page for Educare Arizona, and there are new Flip video cameras at theflip.com/steve through the “Flip for Good” program that benefit this work as well. One of the best assists you can make, though, is just telling others about why you care about children; growing health in kids means growing our collective voice to advocate for them.
With hopes for a peaceful winter season, and continued good weather for building,
On Thursday, September 16th, Educare Arizona broke ground in a packed ceremony (despite the hot weather) -- donors, stakeholders, neighbors, and a troupe of our littlest MVPs were on hand as Steve and members of the Ounce of Prevention and Bounce Learning Network initiative spoke to the importance of investing in quality early learning.
Donating to high-quality early learning programs like Educare Arizona is a sound investment, recognized and supported by business leaders across the country, including Susie Buffett, Bill Gates, J.B. Pritzker, George Kaiser, and Nobel Prize-winning economist James Heckman. When we address the needs of children early, we plan for sustainable, productive growth in our communities.
Check out photos of the day below and join our effort to grow health in kids -- thank you for your assist!
Educare Arizona entered summer with a wonderful showing of support from both the early learning and investment communities -- anchor funders The Steve Nash Foundation, Ibis Foundation, and Whiteman Foundation were honored at the Science of Early Learning Luncheon just as the Suns perfected their second-round sweep of the San Antonio Spurs; and key leaders in the Arizona community announced their support of Educare: the Steele Foundation, Arizona Community Foundation, and APS.
New renderings give us a great idea of what the building will look like (see attachments below), and work has begun to design outdoor play spaces that complement the LEED design and developmental innovations of the interior.
As the summer heat continues, we're continuing to fire up enthusiasm for excellence in learning opportunities for at-risk children and their families. We invite you to join us in making Educare Arizona one of the country's premier learning labs, teaching centers, and policy voices. Make your assist here, or at stevenash.org (where you can get some free swag for your generosity!).
Educare Arizona is moving forward with great progress and exciting advancements: with an innovative building design on track to achieve LEED Silver Certification for environmental sustainability, the at-risk children entering Educare Arizona will have not only a Center that uses the latest research in implementing classroom and play space, but a healthy place to learn and grow.
Construction plans are underway, and we look forward to breaking ground this summer, in order to open to children and families in the Autumn of 2011.
Educare Arizona has kicked off its capital campaign, and energized by the support for early learning in Arizona and across the country. By taking part in the discussion, we're hoping to raise the volume on the critical need to invest in children right from birth.
As part of the conversation, the Steve Nash Foundation recently hosted the latest in its Sustainable Kids Series: Healthy Brains, Happy Babies. The session featured Dr. Jill Stamm of the New Directions Institute for Infant Brain Development, and -- despite a steady Scottsdale downpour -- attracted a capacity crowd to the tent outside Moonbeams Sleep Shop. With key hydration provided by glaceau, the Sustainable Kids Series is another way that the Steve Nash Foundation is working to increase access to resources for every child and the people that care for him or her.
New Directions Institute has just announced that it will be honoring the anchor funders of Educare Arizona -- the Steve Nash Foundation, Ibis Foundation, and Whiteman Foundation -- at its annual Science of Early Learning Award Luncheon this coming May. We're happy to be recognized by such a prestigious organization and staunch advocates of early childhood development.
As Educare Arizona progresses, we invite you to learn more at our website -- www.educarearizona.org -- or at stevenash.org.
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