During first year, Nebraska Child Care Referral website sees growth; new features coming to make site even more valuable for parents and providers

What began in April 2020 as a response to desperate parents seeking child care during the pandemic as well as providers who were operating at less than half capacity, a group of early childhood stakeholders collaborated to create the Nebraska Child Care Referral Network. All licensed child care homes, centers, and preschools in Nebraska can be found in the searchable database at www.NEChildCareReferral.org.

What began in April 2020 as a response to desperate parents seeking child care during the pandemic as well as providers who were operating at less than half capacity, a group of early childhood stakeholders collaborated to create the Nebraska Child Care Referral Network. All licensed child care homes, centers, and preschools in Nebraska can be found in the searchable database at http://www.NEChildCareReferral.org.

Posted in Early Childhood, News and Events

Raising Awareness: Sarah Experienced the Foster Care System and a Thriving Adulthood

This May, as we recognize Foster Care Awareness Month, we bring you Sarah’s story. As an organization that envisions all children, youth, and families thriving, we love to share stories like these. A young mother whose resiliency enabled her to push through life challenges as well asthe pandemic, Sarah has been a state ward for, in her words, "as long as she can remember."   Read more about how Sarah utilized her resolve and Connected Youth Initiative program to transition into a thriving adulthood.

This May, as we recognize Foster Care Awareness Month, we bring you Sarah’s story. As an organization that envisions all children, youth, and families thriving, we love to share stories like these. A young mother whose resiliency enabled her to push through life challenges as well as the pandemic, Sarah has been a state ward for, in her words, “as long as she can remember.”  

Read more about how Sarah utilized her resolve and a Connected Youth Initiative program to transition into a thriving adulthood.

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Posted in News and Events, Systems, Teen/Early Adulthood

It’s Not Easy Being Green: It’s Productive! Beyond School Bells and The Bay Welcome The Greenery, a Container Farm that Teaches Entrepreneurship and 21st Century Career Skills

On Saturday, April 24, Beyond School Bells (BSB), Nebraska Children and Families Foundation’s afterschool network, and The Bay, a Lincoln youth service organization, hosted a ribbon-cutting ceremony for this high-tech hydroponic farm. We’re grateful to The Ben Hormel Harris Foundation, which gifted The Greenery to the city of Lincoln. The Greenery is a compact growing container created by Freight Farms, a Boston-based ag-tech company. The Greenery is the equivalent to 2.5-acres worth of farmland in its contained space. BSB and the Bay have since decided to use this cutting-edge farm to bring quality STEM learning and innovation to Lincoln!

Posted in Middle Childhood, News and Events

Chasing Down and Living the Dream: Thanks to the Whole Community, Stick Creek Kids Opens its Doors! 

Welcome to Wood River, Nebraska. Their Communities for Kids (C4K) core team is proud to announce the opening of their childcare center, Stick Creek Kids. But like most dreams, the team hasn’t always walked on a smooth path. But rather than backing down, they embarked on the challenging road. Together, with the help of their community, the center’s doors will open.  Read more about how this community accomplished this remarkable feat.

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Posted in Early Childhood, News and Events

The Little Collaboration that Could

For those who have been following the series of collaboration start-ups, you may be wondering what’s on the other end. How does a partnership move from an idea to a fully realized and functional project? This month, you’ll hear the story of an idea that germinated between several people and grew over the span of five years into a multi-organizational collaboration that has found statewide success and is sprouting roots in the national community. Read more.

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Posted in Early Childhood

Early Childhood Event Builds Bilingual Partnerships Between Providers and Families

On Saturday, April 24, from 9:00-10:00 a.m. the counties will hold back-to-back Zoom sessions, one in English and one in Spanish, to inspire conversations about the bi-lingual experience in childcare. The event, titled “Supporting Spanish Speakers in Early Childhood,” offers providers insight into Latinx cultures and invites Spanish-speaking families to better understand the requirements of the American educational system and to engage actively with the providers who care for their children. Read more about this event!

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Posted in Cradle to career, Early Childhood, News and Events

Prevent Child Abuse Nebraska Recognizes Every Community’s Role in Supporting Thriving Families

On April 2nd, several Bring Up Nebraska partner organizations, and including First Lady Susanne Shore and DHHS CEO Dannette Smith met to plant blue pinwheels on the lawn of the Governor’s Residence.

Governor Ricketts signed a proclamation declaring April Child Abuse Prevention Month in Nebraska. Here, DHHS CEO Dannette Smith (left) poses with First Lady Shore (right) who is holding the proclamation.

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Posted in Uncategorized

Sixpence Success Story: How Sixpence Laid the Groundwork for A Young Woman to Build Her Dreams

Today, Daisy Ortiz has a story to tell. Daisy was raised in a loving, supportive family. As a teenager, she and her parents were committed to her pursuing a bright future. At 16, however, she encountered an earth-shattering surprise: she was pregnant. How did her resolve and Sixpence help her through this major life challenge? Read more in our blog, in Daisy's words.

Today, Daisy Ortiz has a story to tell. Daisy was raised in a loving, supportive family. As a teenager, she and her parents were committed to her pursuing a bright future. At 16, however, she encountered an earth-shattering surprise: she was pregnant. How did her resolve and Sixpence help her through this major life challenge? Read more in our blog, in Daisy’s words.

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Posted in Early Childhood, News and Events

Beyond School Bells and Cardinal Community Learning Centers Grow the Good Life with GPA Outdoor Program

If you visit Crete Public Schools’ campus, you’ll notice a sense of life. Monarchs flitter through gardens. Heirloom vegetables thrive in the greenhouse. Cardinals return to roost in trees. This revitalization is no accident; it is the result of Cardinal Community Learning Centers’ (CCLC) outdoor education program. This lively scene is also proof that working together, as a community, we can turn old spaces into vibrant new ones while creating opportunity and abundance.   Beyond School Bells and Cardinal Community Learning Centers revitalize outdoor spaces and create quality learning opportunites, thanks to supporters like you. Read more.

If you visit Crete Public Schools’ campus, you’ll notice a sense of life. Monarchs flitter through gardens. Heirloom vegetables thrive in the greenhouse. Cardinals return to roost in trees. This revitalization is no accident; it is the result of Cardinal Community Learning Centers’ (CCLC) outdoor education program. This lively scene is also proof that working together, as a community, we can turn old spaces into vibrant new ones while creating opportunity and abundance.  

Beyond School Bells and Cardinal Community Learning Centers revitalize outdoor spaces and create quality learning opportunites, thanks to supporters like you. Read more.

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Posted in Uncategorized

Meet Lauren Ward: Assistant Vice President of Trafficking and Violence Prevention Shares Her Empowering Approach

How do you and Lauren Ward, Assistant Vice President of Trafficking and Violence Prevention, support human trafficking survivors? Lauren describes how you can go from helping to empowering. Read more. 

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Posted in News and Events, Teen/Early Adulthood
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