About the Spectrum of Opportunity
In 2021, the WVDHHR launched the WV Breastfeeding Friendly Child Care Designation. This designation recognizes child care providers who go above and beyond to preserve a mother’s choice to breastfeed. The program includes ten steps and consultation to assist providers as they make changes to facilitate a breastfeeding friendly environment. In support of this initiative, KEYS partnered with the WV Perinatal Partnership, the WV Breastfeeding Alliance, and WV WIC to host a train-the-trainer event.
WV Champion NAP SACC Center Awards
It’s important to recognize and reward the dedicated efforts of child care providers who promote health and wellness to the children and families they serve. Winners of the award receive a plaque, a promotional video, and a $3,000 cash prize. The first annual WV Champion NAP SACC Center Award opened for applications in the fall of 2020 for providers who are part of the PLN, and the winners were announced at celebrating connections. In October of 2021, the application was opened to all licensed child care centers in WV.
Healthy Environment Awards
In the spring of 2021, Healthy Environment Awards were opened to child care providers in the PLN. There were three categories: Natural Learning Environments, Healthy Celebrations, and Farm 2 ECE. Four providers received the award, which included a plaque, a graphic, and a monetary prize of $1,000.
Survive COVID & Thrive Tomorrow
Child care businesses across the nation have struggled to keep their doors open during the COVID-19 pandemic, which exacerbated existing challenges. In response, the Earlier, the Better initiative created a policy work group to bring awareness to the issues in WV. This group conducted two virtual meetings to share the concerns of both parents and child care businesses and discuss possible solutions. The policy group used the information from these sessions to put together a list of recommendations and priority recommendations for federal COVID-19 relief funding packages.