Our latest newsletter has been mailed, here’s an electronic copy in case you missed it or if you prefer it this way!
The day after the defeat of Proposition 302 – and the resulting preservation of voter-protected funds for quality early childhood services supported by First Things First – Channel 13 visited WOW to get a first hand look at its unique program for toddlers and preschoolers with speech and language impairments.
…and so is the Catalina Rotary Speech and Language Clinic. Both were dedicated in a ribbon-cutting ceremony on March 26th, with over 200 friends and supporters joining in the fun. The new Angel Donor Wall and Tiles for Tots were revealed then too, both the creation of ceramic artist Julie Szerena Stein. Right now, WOW is wrapping up this school year and looking forward to its 19th Summer Day Camp. We’re still building, however, as a new Toddler program is scheduled to open in August 2010. Thanks First Things First for making that happen. Keep looking for updates on Camp and ToddlerU!
With the help of staff, parents, and many volunteers, classroom furniture was moved over to the Angel Wing on the weekend of January 30th and classes opened on Monday to the wonderful smiles of all the kids. Excitement reigned! That very same day, renovation began on the Catalina Rotary Speech-Language Clinic in the original facility. We’ll be ready to show off our new campus at our dedication on March 26th from 5:30 – 7:30. Come join the celebration. Families, friends, and supporters can tour the new campus, enjoy some wine and hor d’oeuvres, and marvel at the Donor Wall created by ceramic tile artist, Julie Stein, as it is unveiled for the world to see.
In October of 2009, First Things First (FTF) awarded the University of Arizona’s Child Language Center and Gruenwald Blitz Clinic for Communication Disorders in Children a grant for $100,000. Its purpose is to train preschool teachers and early care providers in the north Pima County area to recognize “red flags” associated with speech and language delays, make appropriate referrals to community resources, and facilitate speech and language of children in their classrooms or care setting. The goal is to help families of children with speech and language delays access therapeutic services that will help them catch up with their peers and be reay to learn, read, and succeed in kindergarten. The timing is critical. For every $1 we spend in these early years, we save $17 in much less effective remedial programs and lost potential later on.
FTF, approved by Arizona voters, works to ensure that our youngest children have access to quality early childhood experiences so they will start school healthy and ready to succeed. Across the state, FTF regional partnership councils – in collaboration with local leaders – identify the educational and health needs of children from birth through age 5 in their communities and fund strategies to address those needs. The program we will offer is funded by the FTF through the North Pima Regional Council and presented in collaboration with The Parent Connection and Southwest Human Development.