Over the past year, All Our Kin’s expansion into Bridgeport has been greeted with huge enthusiasm. We are excited to announce that we have decided to extend our range of programs and services to meet the needs of providers throughout Fairfield County, including Stamford, beginning in the fall of 2014. All Our Kin’s team now includes the energetic and accomplished Erica Phillips, who will bring a wealth of expertise in leadership and the education sector to her role as our Stamford/Norwalk Network Director.
Stamford is a city of high poverty in a wealthy area of the state. More than thirteen percent of Stamford’s children live in poverty, according to analysis by Connecticut Voices for Children. In March 2014, over 450 children in Stamford received subsidized child care through Connecticut’s Care 4 Kids program, which only subsidizes care for families with high need.
The high cost of child care in the city poses a challenge for Stamford’s low-income families. At $18,727, Stamford’s average annual cost for center-based infant/toddler care is the third-highest in the state, according to a recent 2-1-1 Child Care report. On average, Stamford families with an infant or toddler in center-based care pay about 21% of the median family income on child care, compared to a statewide average of 15 percent.
All Our Kin’s efforts will increase the availability of safe, healthy, quality child care options for Stamford’s children and families. Our expansion to Stamford will allow more family child care providers from a wider range of communities to benefit from All Our Kin’s model for supporting child care providers at every stage of their development, from parents and caregivers to professional educators and businesspeople. All Our Kin’s services for providers will especially focus on children’s emotional health and literacy and numeracy, two areas where our efforts to shape provider practice will have a deep and direct impact on outcomes for children. To learn more about All Our Kin’s model, you can read a recent evaluation of our work.
Already, we have several Stamford-based providers who travel to our meetings and classes in Bridgeport. We’re thrilled that these providers will soon have an All Our Kin site much closer to home. Our new site also will enable us to serve our Norwalk providers more effectively and continue our ongoing commitment to the Norwalk community. This summer and fall, All Our Kin will host a five-session series on child development at the Stepping Stones Museum for Children in Norwalk.
We also couldn’t be more excited that Erica will be guiding us in our expansion and transition. Erica brings a diverse set of business and education experiences to All Our Kin. Previously, she was a Senior Director at Achievement First Charter School Network, where she started the Human Capital team. She was responsible for supporting Achievement First’s activities around human resource systems, talent strategy, employment policies, benefits, performance improvement, compensation and diversity and inclusiveness strategy. Erica was also a fellow with the Education Pioneers 2008 New York cohort. She holds an M.B.A. and an M.Ed. from Stanford University, and a B.S. in industrial engineering from Northwestern University.
In 2012, Erica founded Second Home Early Child Care Centers in Brooklyn. She has long been a committed advocate for family child care and early learning, and she is thrilled to be a part of All Our Kin’s team. We hope you will join us in welcoming her to All Our Kin!