The Latest in Advocacy
by School's Out Washington | | Posted under
SOWA and our partners are working at the state and federal level to advocate for increased funding for summer programming and general support. At the federal level, we continue to work with Washington Nonprofits to secure funds for nonprofit stabilization. At the state level, we are attempting to secure some of the Governor's CARES Act funds for summer programming and beyond, as well as developing a strategy to protect against cuts in a possible special session.
As discussed in our weekly webinars, now is a great time to reach out to your local school districts regarding partnerships for programming this summer. Each district will receive an allotment of their own CARES Act funds and districts can potentially use other funds for partnerships this summer including Title I and state Learning Assistance Program (LAP) funding.
Additionally, planning for summer is critical, albeit very challenging. We do not yet know what will be permitted in terms of group size. Planning various scenarios is a great idea: virtual-only programming, in-person programming, and a hybrid. For any in-person programming; the best educated guess is that at least initially group sizes must be no more than 10 people to a room including adults.
To help meet needs this summer and fall, here are some partnership opportunities for programs and districts:
- Financial resources: support for ongoing program operations and maintain staff necessary for child-care and youth programming; wrap-around supports and mentoring in the summer months; and additional staffing for a potential increased need for licensed-exempt summer camp exemptions.
- Space: public spaces including school buildings and community centers to spread out programming.
- Program Support: janitorial, basic needs items, transportation and delivery, and providing meals through the USDA Summer Food Service Program (SFSP).
- Academic Tool and Resource Sharing: including online learning tools, professional development support, and resources to secure technology (devices, WIFI either personal or for on-site use at a program) particularly for low-income youth, foster youth, youth involved in the juvenile justice system and youth experiencing homelessness.
In addition to working with school districts and planning for summer, there are three important ways to support advocacy:
- Complete the questionnaire.
- Share your stories – challenges in programming and child care, positive things happening in your programs if you're open. Contact Brianna Kirschenbaum.
- Join the Youth Development Strategy Table. Contact David Beard.
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