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ARCHS Awards $685,280 to United 4 Children to Enhance Early Childhood Programming

This summer ARCHS awarded $685,280 in funding to United 4 Children to provide Educare and Infant Toddler Specialist Network (ITSN) services. Funding will collectively support 120 regional childcare programs, including 190 staff trainings, and 1,500 quality improvement site visits.

“ARCHS has partnered with United 4 Children for several years to provide youth development and out-of-school time programs. We are excited about expanding this partnership with an intensive focus on vital early childhood programs serving under-resourced families,” says ARCHS’ Chief Executive Officer Wendell E. Kimbrough. 

“We are honored to partner with ARCHS in our shared vision for Missouri’s children to be given every opportunity to be safe, healthy, and to thrive in high quality learning settings from birth and beyond,” says United 4 Children Executive Director Deanna Finch.  

The Educare program supports, educates, and provides resources that improve the quality of childcare and early learning programs which serve children receiving state childcare subsidies. The program’s goal is to ensure that all childcare and early learning programs have the knowledge and support needed to provide developmentally appropriate practices and to implement early childhood programming that supports children’s development.  

Educare services are available to family childcare programs that serve at least one child receiving childcare subsidy assistance from the state. This includes registered but unlicensed family childcare providers, licensed family childcare providers, and licensed family childcare providers operating in a group home setting. 

ITSN’s goal is to improve the quality of infant and toddler care. The program provides free support to childcare providers, including assessment of infant and toddler classrooms, on-site consultations, materials, and targeted trainings. ITSN helps childcare centers or providers who are licensed or license-exempt, care for children ages 0-36 months, and care for at least one child receiving a state childcare subsidy. 

ARCHS funding for Educare and ITSN is provided by the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, Office of Childhood. 

ARCHS Awards $450,000 to Support Summer Enrichment Programs and Address Learning Loss Associated with COVID-19

Jennings Mayor Yolanda Austin visits with youth participating in ARCHS' funded summer enrichment program offered by Provident Behavioral Health at Woodland Elementary School.

ARCHS issued $450,00 to provide summer 2021 enrichment programs for more than 740 youth at 22 St. Louis area locations managed by 10 area youth development organizations including: Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater St. Louis, Gene Slay’s Girls & Boys Club, Midtown Community Services, Northside Youth & Senior Service Center, Provident Behavioral Health, Unleashing Potential, SPROG/Horizons, Stray Dog Theatre/Arts in Mind, Wesley House Association, and Youth & Family Center.

In addition, ARCHS is partnering with HealthWorks! Museum (traveling show assembly around health/wellness), Operation CEO (entrepreneurship program), and Mentors in Motion (math & music mentorship program) to further enhance the summer programs.

This year, the programs will intentionally address learning loss caused by the COVID-19 pandemic with a focus on academic support/enrichment, social and life skills, health and recreation, character development, and parent and family involvement. Each day, a nutritious meal or snack will be provided.

2021 KIDS COUNT Data Book Now Available

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The Annie E. Casey Foundation ranks Missouri as 30th out of 50 states for child well-being. The 2021 KIDS COUNT Data book reveals the status of Missouri's children before the pandemic took hold. In 2019, fewer Missouri children lived in households with incomes below the federal poverty line than at any point in the prior decade. During the years of recovery from the Great Recession in 2008, the number of Missouri's kids who lived in poverty fell to less than one in five, according to this year's data.  

The Data Book released June 2021 shows nearly a decade of progress that could be erased by the COVID-19 pandemic in next year's report. Policymakers must act with kids' best interest in mind to recover from schools and businesses being shut down. 

"In Missouri, we have seen firsthand the great challenges the pandemic unleashed on communities in our state. We are fortunate to have our network of 20 Community Partnerships who were nimble enough to pivot to meet the ever-changing needs of children and families during this time of crisis," says Bill Dent, executive director of the Family and Community Trust (FACT). 

Each year, the KIDS COUNT Data Book tracks 16 indicators measuring childrens' economic well-being, education, health, and family and community access. Missouri improved in several areas, such as on-time high school graduation rates, ranking sixth in the country.

Click HERE to read the 2021 KIDS COUNT Data Book. 

Springing into Workforce Development through SkillUP

SkillUP for webpage
workforce development initiatives have persevered through the throes of the COVID-19 pandemic. ARCHS continues to fund and provide strategic technical assistance to SkillUP programs through our St. Louis partners. Right now, St. Louisans have the opportunity to learn while they earn. 

SkillUP is a free program that helps Food Stamp (SNAP) recipients get help with skills, training, and employer connections to get a job (or a better job). A SkillUP job coach from the agencies below will work with someone to create an individual plan to help them reach goals and start a new career. 

ARCHS' SkillUP partners have teamed up with the following local employers to place job seekers: Amazon Fulfillment Center · Building the Dream Equity Management LLC · Footprints Learning Academy · Our Time to Grow Learning Center · Penske · Revive Janitorial · SSM Health · The Home Quest Group · The Link Market · Schnucks

Contact information for each of ARCHS' SkillUP partners is below:
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Highlighting the Neighborhood Healing Network in April

NHN April Graphic

April brings attention to the effects of crime and trauma with National Crime Victims' Rights Week from April 18-24th. ARCHS wants to highlight its Neighborhood Healing Network program for the entire month of April, and remind St. Louisans that help is available year-round. 

The Neighborhood Healing Network is a unique program because it provides wrap-around services tailored to an individual or family who has either been directly or indirectly impacted by crime and violence. Community resource specialists at each of our five non-profit hubs can connect residents of St. Louis City or County to victim services, social services, trauma workshops, and support groups for both the general public and professionals in different sectors. 

All Neighborhood Healing Network Sector Trainings and Public Workshops ensure the following for attendees:

  • Develop a deeper understanding of trauma and its impact.
  • Gain trauma-sensitive practices and strategies to avoid re-traumatizing individuals who have experienced trauma and/or victimization.
  • Learn to navigate community resources and networks to support the immediate and long-term needs of individuals who experience trauma.

Neighborhood Healing Network Sector Training for Early Childhood Professionals (April 28 from 1 p.m. - 5 p.m. via Zoom)

Click here to view archived sector trainings for Workforce Development professionals and Faith-Based Leaders.

Public Workshops in April 
(Anyone from St. Louis City or County can attend, and there will be a $25 attendance raffle.):

If you are in need of assistance from the Neighborhood Healing Network, reach out to any of ARCHS' non-profit hubs below:
NHN contact info