Children don't get a say in the world they're born into. They don't choose their families, home life, or community--or even if they have a place to call home.
The first five years of life, when kids' brains are the most flexible and adaptable, are a critical period for learning and growth.
Experiences and relationships formed in those years build a foundation for future learning and success. The impact can last a lifetime.
Compounding situations like income inequality, racism, education inequity, and other pressing social conditions have prevented generations of children from reaching their full potential.
At Vanguard, we believe that every child has a right to a Strong Start. From bedtime stories with family, to safe, green neighborhood spaces to play, to nurturing communities, every child needs and deserves the opportunity to learn, grow, and explore.
This belief is backed by empirical evidence that high-quality early experiences have the power to change a vulnerable child's trajectory.
Kids with access to high-quality early education are 25% more likely to graduate high school, four times more likely to have completed a bachelor's degree or higher, and earn up to 25% more in wages as an adult.
Strong Start for Kids invests in evidence-based approaches to build and support resilient families, help them withstand the stressors of poverty, and understand their role in their child's development, support effective early learning programs with well-trained, well-compensated teachers, and strengthen communities that advance early learning and support the children and families that live in them.
These types of critical investments in the lives of young children today, are an important first step in creating a robust workforce for tomorrow.
What's true for our investors is true for the youngest in our communities: by investing early, we help give children the best chance for success.