Nonprofit Spotlight: All Our Kin

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In March, PennyLoafer donors collectively gave to All Our Kin (AOK)!

The Rundown

  • Years founded: 1999

  • Leadership: Co-founder and CEO, Jessica Sager, is a Yale Law graduate and national expert on child care issues. She was recently named to the CARE 100 list of “the Americans doing the most to re-imagine and re-humanize our care system.” Other co-founder, Janna Wagner, has a Master’s in Education from Harvard and is a former teacher.

  • Issue they address: access to affordable high-quality child care and early education options.

  • What they do: train, support and sustain family child care educators.

  • How they do it:

    • Family Child Care Networks: provide direct services to family child care providers in CT and NY, including mentorship, professional development, business and licensing programs, grants/loans, and a network of other family child care providers.

    • Technical assistance and training for national partners: work across 21 states to implement the AOK model and effectively increase the supply, quality, and sustainability of family child care.

    • Policy change: Advocate for family child care providers and families at the local, state and federal policy level.

Why they were chosen

All Our Kin’s model is nationally-recognized for improving availability and quality of home-based child care. It’s result is a “triple win”: child care providers succeed as business owners; working parents find stable, high-quality care for their kids; and the children gain a solid educational foundation.

  • They directly serve ~1,100 child care providers, who educate and care for more than 6K children from primarily low-income areas in NY and CT.
  • It’s effective. On average, AOK providers score over 50% higher on measures of quality than non-AOK providers, and increase earnings by $5K+ within a year of finishing one of their licensing or business programs.
    • Children in the care of AOK providers benefit too. They show better social emotional development and outperform their non-AOK peers on both math and language assessments.
  • AOK is on a mission to transform the child care system across the country, training national partners in 21 states, while advocating for better child care policies and the families most impacted.

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🏠 Family child care providers care for small groups of children in a home setting. It’s flexible, affordable, and usually available during non-traditional hours. These nurturing and familiar environments are often the primary source of care for infants and toddlers (0-3 years old), many of whom are children of color and children from low-income communities.

📉 The number of family child care providers has been declining for years. In fact, more than half of the U.S. population is estimated to live in child care deserts (communities where there are no providers or so few that there are 3 children for every available slot).

💸 Perhaps unsurprising when you consider the wages for this labor-intensive work. Pre-pandemic, child care workers, who are overwhelming women, made an average of $11.65/hour. And in only 10 states do they earn enough to cover basic needs.

Costs of Covid

😷 Since the start of the pandemic, 16K child care providers permanently closed (a 9% decline in licensed child care providers), due to increased operating costs, thin profit margins, labor costs and unpredictable attendance due to covid.

👩‍🍼 Limited options and rising costs of child care has kept many parents, particularly women, out of the workforce since the pandemic. Over a million women are still out of the workforce compared to pre-pandemic numbers.

👀 The Build Back Better bill, which stalled in congress, proposed one of the largest investments in child care in the country’s history, including curbing the costs of child care for families, increasing wages for child care workers and improving the supply of high quality care. TBD what will happen!

If you enjoyed this and want to get involved, you can support the Quality Education cause on PennyLoafer, starting with as little as $5/month. Each month, you’ll support and learn about a different nonprofit working to improve the education system.