What We Do

A Catalyst for Change

EPIC is a group of prestigious business executives partnering to invest in children. As leaders in their companies and industries, our Members are leaving a legacy of true impact and lasting change.

INFORM

What’s good for the child is good for business, and EPIC partners with employers to help them support the workforce of today by finding the best solutions to care for the workforce of tomorrow. Learn more about our Strategic Framework.

Our network of business leaders is committed to a future where child care and workforce preparedness are not roadblocks to business success and economic growth. Together we are initiating change and shaping the future of Colorado through action-oriented conversations with business associations, government leaders, and other organizations to raise awareness and increase business engagement in early childhood.

Because Colorado is among the least affordable states for child care and supply does not meet current demand, access to quality care is limited for many children – and the costs to the community are great. We know that:

  • An investment in early child care and education can produce an $8.60 return for each $1 invested.
  • Investments in early child care and education have substantial impact on educational success, as well as health, poverty, workforce development and the economy.
  • Children participating in quality child care and education are more likely to stay away from teen pregnancy, drugs and criminal activity.
  • Parents – the current workforce – are more productive when they are not concerned about their children during the work day.

When employees’ children are cared for, our society thrives and companies are able to improve productivity, reduce absenteeism, and foster a more loyal, happier workforce.

Leadership & Education

Increasing the business community’s awareness of the importance of early care and education and engagement efforts

  • Guiding public will efforts through leadership, idea generation, and solution implementation
  • Collaborating with EPIC Members and business organizations through events and communications to promote education and action

Child Care Infrastructure

Engaging employers in solutions that meet the infrastructure, capital and workforce needs for sustainability and the provision of child care and early education services

  • Promoting access to affordable child care real estate and facilities
  • Fostering public/private partnerships that support investments in early childhood and infrastructure

Workforce

Helping employers attract and retain the best workforce, while supporting environments that enable families and children to thrive

  • Supporting businesses and communities in improving access to quality, affordable child care through tailored consulting and advising
  • Offering resources and technical expertise that lead to implementation of family friendly policies that work for both employers and employees

Policy

Shaping and advancing policies that support EPIC’s strategic priorities and programs

  • Engaging business leaders for testimony, op-eds, and legislation advocacy
  • Informing regulation (rule) and public funding

ACCOMMODATE

The future of business starts with you.

Our members are leaders of companies who…

  • Recognize the positive impact of child care and education on quality of the workforce and their contribution
  • Support families and children
  • Desire to attract and retain the best talent
  • Want to improve the workforce of the future through early education
  • Believe in workforce quality and diversity
  • Want to make an impact as a leader of social change

If this sounds like you, we have tools to help you succeed for greater impact to your business and society.

Need help developing ideas or implementing new workforce supports? EPIC offers consulting services to employers and community organizations for specialized projects related to child care initiatives and project implementation.

Past projects include working with employers to implement new child care incentives during open enrollment and supporting the successful design, regulatory approval, and launch of on-site child care services for employees.

INVEST

COLORADO TAX CREDIT

Did you know in Colorado individuals and businesses can claim a 50% state income tax credit for qualified contributions to child care providers up to $200,000?

Colorado leads the nation in providing a tax-advantaged tool for child care through the Child Care Contribution Tax Credit (CCTC) used to:

  • Establish and operate licensed child care facilities
  • Fund grant programs for parents needing help to pay for child care
  • Supplement professional development costs for individuals working in the child care sector

BUILDING UP INITIATIVE

To reverse the trend of child care program closures and the disappearance of child care slots across Colorado, we are taking action to change the child care business model in a way that supports a healthy, sustainable bottom line while ensuring high quality early learning experiences for children and the ability for families to work.

Working to decrease the expenses and increase access to start-up capital and revenues will allow businesses to meet their workforce needs by providing quality child care and long-term early learning services.

Decrease Expenses

Affordable & Secure Real Estate

Increase Revenue

Capital Financing & Fund Development

Clear the Path

Regulatory Alignment & Innovation

We are inviting business leaders from real estate development, homebuilding, finance, construction and other industries along with philanthropic, governmental, non-profit partners and child care business operators working within the sector to join us to create innovative solutions that will improve access to affordable, high quality child care and early learning.

KEEP THE LIGHTS ON

COVID-19 shined a spotlight on the fragility of the early care and education sector. With the risk of the pandemic decimating entire industries, we consulted and helped coordinate, and navigate for COVID response entities such as the Colorado Emergency Child Care Collaborative and the Keep the Lights On Fund.

The EPIC team helped alleviate supply chain issues for child care business owners by convening partners at The Women’s Foundation of Colorado, Mile High United Way and other organizations to fund and coordinate the purchase and distribution of over $170,000 in cleaning and sanitation supplies.

To meet this critical need, a public-private partnership effort was established with the goal of providing 1) cleaning supplies and 2) direct financial assistance to licensed family child care homes, centers, and school-age programs statewide, and thus “keep the lights on”.

It takes all of us – nonprofits, philanthropy, government, and business leaders – to help stabilize these vital small businesses and reduce further closures. To get involved or learn more please visit Mile High United Way.

POLICY AND ADVOCACY

EPIC has championed and contributed to the passage of successful legislation in Colorado that has led to the Child Care Contribution Tax Credit (CCTC), Funding for Full-day Kindergarten, Universal Preschool to name a few and continues to drive policy reform in three priority areas.

Priority #1: Advocate for policies that support children’s development and the needs of working families

Child care enables families to work, and families need access to a variety of affordable, high-quality early childhood supports and choices for their children. Colorado must strive for funding and program administration that is an aligned, user-friendly, transparent, and effective system of resources centered on serving the needs of families and young children while ensuring that children have high-quality care and early education experiences.

EPIC supports:

  • A mixed delivery system of early childhood care and education services
  • Universal Preschool (UPK) implementation and program design that ensures accessibility for families and viability for providers
  • Early childhood programs and funding that meet the diverse needs of children and working families
  • Expanding equitable access to services that meet the needs of the whole child and their families

Priority #2: Advocate for investments in child care infrastructure to support and grow the economy

Child care is a critical service for economic development and growth in Colorado, and the state must invest in the physical infrastructure necessary to support child care services. Communities and employers should be incentivized and supported to innovatively design, create, and sustain early child care and education services.

EPIC supports:

  • Incentivizing employers, developers, land/building owners, government, and other community partners to invest in child care infrastructure and programs 
  • Implementing real estate solutions and financial resources to support the creation, retention, and expansion of child care facilities
  • Addressing regulatory barriers to the creation of new child care capacity and businesses
  • Incentivizing the co-location of child care with other development through technical assistance, financial resources, and regulatory alignment

Priority #3: Advocate for policies that recognize and stabilize early childhood small businesses

It is critical to elevate the voices of those providing critical early childhood services and ensure systems are designed to support and stabilize the early childhood sector through the development, design, and ongoing implementation of early childhood funds and programs. The business of early childhood is incredibly challenging in many ways, and in order to ensure a sufficient supply of early childhood services, policies that value and create financial stability for these small businesses must be prioritized.

EPIC supports:

  • Creating business supports, technical assistance resources, and incentives to ensure early childhood business owners can enter and remain in the sector
  • Encouraging design and investment in innovative career pathways and workforce development
  • Advancing opportunities for early childhood business owners to participate in and inform policy  
  • Addressing regulatory and legal barriers to entry for the child care industry

What People

ARE SAYING

EPIC is changing Colorado’s future for the better and driving the economy forward by tackling the challenges of affordable, high-quality child care to support our state’s workforce. Together, we can help companies support a stronger workforce today, while increasing access to quality child care and early education that will set Colorado’s workforce of tomorrow ahead of the pack.

Quality early care and education is rare and expensive. EPIC – a coalition of smart, compassionate business leaders – is working to change that. Helping my employees address the wellbeing of their children has had a positive impact on increasing productivity and lowering turnover. Putting early care and education at the top of our national priorities is not just a moral imperative, it is also a financial one.

EPIC is vital to the business community, today and into multiple future generations. There is nothing more important than giving each child born in Colorado a chance to thrive and become a future business leader within the Colorado community.

EPIC is making a significant impact to break the chain of generational poverty through early childhood intervention. Their advocacy and workplace initiatives are making a meaningful and lasting difference in the lives of so many children.

I am a very proud founding member of EPIC. Mile High United Way knows there is no more important issue to the business community than early child care and education because it drives the Colorado economy.

As longtime champions of accessible, quality early childhood education and care, PNC Bank and EPIC both understand how critical this work is not only to young people, but to the future of our community and economy.

EPIC is a unique advocacy organization that bridges the divide between the business sector and very young children. They mobilize business leaders and equip their members with resources and techniques to better support working parents.

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