Educare is about PARTNERSHIP. Philanthropists, Head Start and Early Head Start providers, and school officials partner to narrow the achievement gap for children in their communities. Each commits to securing the financing, program expertise and public support essential to maintaining Educare’s high–quality standards.
To support Educare’s high-quality, comprehensive services, multiple funding streams are braided together in innovative ways. This public-private collaboration includes state and local education funding, federal Head Start and Early Head Start funds, child care reimbursements, parent co-payments, and support from individual donors, foundations and corporations. One of Educare’s many purposes is to draw attention to the possibilities of leveraging existing funding in more effective ways.
Educare Arizona is supported by a collaboration of stakeholders and visionary leaders working together to ensure healthy development for all of our children. Educare Arizona is made possible with the public/private support of founding partners: Balsz Elementary School District, Ibis Foundation of Arizona, Southwest Human Development, the Steve Nash Foundation, Whiteman Foundation, Buffett Early Childhood Fund, and other local and national foundations.
Established in 2005, the Buffett Early Childhood Fund is committed to establishing a more level playing field for all children as they enter kindergarten — a goal that should be a given in any society that values equal opportunity. The Buffett Early Childhood Fund invests in young children and their families living in Omaha, the state of Nebraska and across America. The Fund seeks to redefine "education" in America to encompass the first five years of life through investments in practice, policy and knowledge.
The Steve Nash Foundation reflects Steve's genuine compassion for children, and recognizes the importance of their health in the promise of our communities. Formed in 2001 and given U.S. charitable status in 2004, the Steve Nash Foundation is a private foundation dedicated to assisting underserved children in their health, personal development, education and enjoyment of life. The Foundation aims to grow health in kids in Arizona, British Columbia and Paraguay by funding projects that provide direct services to children affected by poverty, illness, abuse, or neglect, and create opportunity for education, health, and empowerment.
The Ibis Foundation of Arizona is a private family foundation established in December 2006 with the vision that each individual’s quality of life is connected to the overall well-being of the community. We pursue this vision through grantmaking in research and in programs related to health and education. We believe that access to health services and education are basic rights and should not be determined by a person’s socioeconomic status.
The mission of the Balsz Elementary School District is “to provide a culture of high expectations and continuous learning.” Balsz is committed to providing an environment where students reach their fullest academic potential through a balanced, academic core curriculum with choices that include vocal, instrumental and visual arts, athletics and technology instruction. The district consists of four elementary schools and one junior high school in east Phoenix.
For nearly thirty years, Southwest Human Development has been reaching out to children and families in Arizona with comprehensive and innovative early childhood services. From small beginnings—a staff of six serving 175 children and families—Southwest has grown into the state’s largest early childhood provider with a staff of more than 600 serving nearly 135,000 children and families each year. Southwest Human Development’s services focus on the following areas: Head Start and Early Head Start; child health and welfare; services for children with disabilities; professional training and development; infant mental health; early literacy.
The mission of the Whiteman Foundation is to promote the health, education and welfare of children, with a special emphasis on the first five years. The foundation’s main funding source is Empire Southwest, which commits 1 percent of its pretax profits to the Whiteman Foundation. From the 1970s to the 1990s, the foundation invested primarily in the arts and higher education. But at the turn of the century, the foundation’s emphasis shifted to creating awareness of the issues surrounding early childhood development and contributing to child welfare.
The Educare Arizona board will collaborate with the health care community, higher education and a wide array of social service providers to ensure that Educare Arizona is truly a comprehensive center of excellence.