2012 Annual Luncheon Draws More Than 800 — Thank you!
Thank you to all our friends who joined us yesterday for our 2012 Annual Luncheon at the Seawell Ballroom! Each year we enjoy bringing together our partners and friends to share the most current research and issues facing Colorado children.
This year we were delighted to feature Harvard Professor and Pediatrician Dr. Jack P. Shonkoff, who called on Colorado community and business leaders, child advocates and policy makers to prioritize early childhood programs. Advances in brain science indicate the importance of the first years of a child’s life in shaping brain development and long-term health and academic outcomes. Dr. Shonkoff encouraged Coloradans to be fearless in trying innovative solutions to help vulnerable children. He shared how his team’s research on brain development and architecture makes a compelling case for investing in early childhood opportunities so all kids have the best start in life.
“The end goal here is not only better outcomes [for children], but equal opportunity,” Dr. Shonkoff said. “This is making the American Dream a reality and a possibility for everyone—and it is science that will do that.”
Chris Watney, Children’s Campaign President and CEO, previewed the issues the Children’s Campaign will pursue with its partners in the coming year. They include overhauling the state’s School Finance Act, streamlining financing for early childhood services and ensuring that implementation of state and federal health reforms serve children and families well. Watney said the endeavors are among the biggest issues the Children’s Campaign has ever taken on.
“What is clearer than ever is a shared vision in Colorado of what should be, and a clear plan for getting to what could be,” Watney said. “In these and all the efforts we embark on together each year, our ability to succeed relies on that clarity, collaboration and commitment.”
Both presenting sponsors for the Annual Luncheon shared their efforts to ensure low-income Colorado children have access to hope and opportunity. The Children’s Corridor is The Piton Foundation’s 20-year effort to help Denver and Aurora children living in the most impoverished neighborhoods have access to high quality education, comprehensive health care and a supportive environment. Comcast’s West Division President, Steve White, announced the second year of the company’sInternet Essentials program. The comprehensive broadband adoption program is designed to help close the digital divide for low-income Americans. In its first full year of availability, more than 100,000 families—that’s more than 400,000 Americans—are now online.