Parent Spotlight – Brandi is a mother and member of the Policy Council of the Jefferson Franklin Community Action Corporation!

Brandi is a mom from Herculaneum. She first became interested in advocacy through her work on the Policy Council with the Jefferson Franklin Community Action Corporation. Brandi wanted to find more ways to engage with influential people and entities on early childhood care and education by sharing her personal story, so she applied for Kids Win Missouri’s ECE Leader Fellowship. As a member of the 2023-2024 Fellowship cohort, Brandi has expanded her knowledge on policies related to early childhood and has utilized her passion for advocacy to effectively engage with both legislators and members of her own community. Get to know Brandi here!

How did you become an advocate for early childhood education?

Through the Policy Council within JFCAC.

Why do you think it’s important to be an advocate as a parent?

Children need help to guide them through life. Children need someone to help identify their needs, emotions, and a good support system. They are our future. It’s easier to help a child rather than wait until they are an adult. Children absorb everything and that can mold who they are as a person. I also feel most people don’t realize children are people too and they matter.

Why should Missouri invest more in child care and early education?

The first 5 years are very important and most children start kindergarten at 5 or 6. Education should start in the womb. Parents also need guidance or help with their children (especially if they have special needs). Understanding that education is important from the very beginning can help the world be a better place. More awareness needs to be spread about what educators and science knows about children.

In one sentence, what does the ideal child care and early education system look like for Missouri families?

Every child receives free education from 0-25 years.

What is one thing you’ve learned about advocacy that you’d like to share with others?

Real change happens when you talk to those who help make the laws, create budgets, and share information with everyone.

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