As United Way shifted their focus more towards Community Impact, United Ways across the nation implemented an initiative known as Success By 6®. The first years of a child's life, birth through age six, are the most important years for building a strong foundation for future success in school and in life.
We all want our children to succeed in life. The foundation for that success starts at birth. A child’s experiences from birth through age six have a profound and lifelong impact. This is when 90% of the brain’s growth occurs and children develop emotional and social attachments, as well as language and motor skills. The people who have the most influence in building this strong foundation are parents and other caregivers with whom the child spends the most time. The loving care, positive learning experiences and supportive environments they provide make a child feel secure and safe - all extremely important in nurturing a child's brain growth and development.
When children receive the right care and nurturing in the first six years, the results can be tremendous! As they grow into teens and adults, they are far less likely to behave poorly, have health problems, drop out of school, abuse drugs or become involved in crime. Instead, they have a better chance of becoming responsible members of our communities.
In Southwest Missouri and Southeast Kansas, Success By 6® is working with numerous stakeholders - school districts, the business community, local non-profit agencies, parents, community leaders and public agencies - to raise awareness about the importance of the early years and to make early childhood a top priority for resources and funding.
Ensuring high quality programs and services for all children and their families requires commitment from health care providers, early childhood education programs, parents, public officials, community leaders and the general public. Success By 6® engages local partners to ensure that the developmental needs of our youngest children are understood and met. In doing this, not only are children likely to succeed in school, they are more likely to achieve in life.