Amid the unprecedented challenges of 2020, EPIC’s accomplishments include not only advancing our mission, but growing our memberships, partnerships, and our own identity. This included launching a new and vibrant website and logo that showcase EPIC as it is today – a positive influence for business leaders and our state’s future.
As advocates for family-friendly workplaces and policies to ensure children have access to high-quality early child care and education, we stand on the principle of “What’s Good for Children is Good for Business.” Our objective to equip children to reach their future potential also means enabling their parents to thrive in today’s workplace.
Although it turned the world upside down in many ways, the COVID-19 pandemic has served to draw even greater attention to the huge deficit of quality child care and how it negatively impacts working parents. Working mothers, especially, have left the workforce in larger numbers than ever before – and are yet to return – due to the necessary prioritization of caring for children.
Colorado had a child care crisis before the pandemic. In this new economy, EPIC is contributing to critical conversations and providing thought leadership towards solid, tangible solutions. 2020 has served to elevate a recognition of the significance of our mission as well as our position of expertise in the arena of child care and its relationship to a sustainable, thriving economy.
We are honored and proud to have been a part of advancing early child care in Colorado this year:
- EPIC played a role in developing and passing three bills related to early care and education:
- Proposition EE was overwhelmingly approved by voters on November’s ballot and will tax tobacco and vaping products and fund early preschool for all four-year-old children.
- Legislation that addresses the recruitment, retention, and professional education of early childhood professionals
- Legislation which enables individuals living in HOA-managed neighborhoods to provide child care within their homes
- We partnered with state legislators and community partners to discover solutions around identifying unused publicly owned real estate that can serve as locations for early child care and education facilities.
- EPIC partnered with Guild Education to design and successfully navigate the creation of an on-site child care center on the third floor of Republic Plaza in downtown Denver.
- EPIC supported pandemic-devastated child care businesses and tapped into member and community connections to support operational needs such as, drafting liability waivers, restructuring leases, and eliminating purchase limits and supply chain issues.
- EPIC and the United Way partnered with a group of community organizations to create the “Keep the Lights On” fund, raising more than $1 million to provide PPE and supplies like bleach and toilet paper to keep child care centers open and safe.
To learn more about EPIC’s accomplishments in 2020 we invite you to watch our Year in Review video.
We are mobilized to continue our momentum and positive impact in 2021. The following strategic priorities have been identified to guide EPIC’s work and programs as we move forward into a year in which we anticipate even greater possibilities:
- Leveraging the voices and influence of business leaders to make early child care and education a priority and to increase public and private investments
- Building a socially prepared and competitive workforce by increasing access to affordable, high quality care and early learning experiences
- Maximizing economic development and growth by improving family-friendly support for the current workforce
We will apply these priorities through a focus on
- Leadership and Education
- Child Care Infrastructure
- Internal Mission Support
Visit our website for more detail about our Strategic Framework.
We are grateful to the business leaders of our communities who support this important work through their membership, partnering to invest in children and creating lasting change that will impact the workforce of the future.
YOU are EPIC – the business community’s nonpartisan voice for early childhood, leading efforts to build infrastructure and advance policies that support the workforce of today while developing the workforce of tomorrow. We are excited to continue the journey! With new partnerships, legislation, and programs in place, we look forward to the year ahead in anticipation of even greater accomplishments. Learn how to join our mission.