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Community engagement effort launched to create vision for early childhood in Detroit

The W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF) and The Kresge Foundation have joined forces to launch Hope Starts Here, a partnership to strengthen and improve access to Detroit’s existing early childhood systems and to elevate the voices of families. The bold community engagement and strategic planning initiative, unveiled Thursday, Nov. 10, at the Michigan Science Center in Detroit, supports ensuring high-quality, accessible and responsive early childhood systems that meet the needs of the more than 80,000 children under age 8 and their families.

Hope Starts Here is co-chaired by WKKF President and CEO La June Montgomery Tabron and The Kresge Foundation President and CEO Rip Rapson.

“Detroit’s residents have told us their hope for this city starts with the success of their children,” said Tabron. “Hope Starts Here will engage the community to build high quality, early childhood experiences for all 80,000 of Detroit’s children.  Today, one in three of our children in Detroit lacks access to quality early learning care and only one out of 10 of our third graders are proficient readers. So, the time to act is now.”

“Detroit’s children cannot be left behind as the city rebounds. We’ve seen tremendous public/private partnerships over the last decade to support Detroit’s cultural and social revitalization,” said Rapson. “Without building systems that support and prepare our young citizens, Detroit cannot reap a full return on all that has been invested. The more that we can do, collectively, to prioritize children, the more Detroit will see our various efforts create the kind of hope that lasts for generations.”

More information on Hope Starts Here is available here.

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