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Early childhood advocates pay a visit to select daycares

National advocate David Lawrence Jr. tours committed providers

Ashley Montgomery | 1/16/2014, 9 a.m.
Last week Wednesday, three daycares received a visit from some of Miami’s top advocate programs for early childhood education. David ...
(L-R) Shawntravia Pointville, owner of Excel Kids Academy gets visit from David Lawrence Jr., Evelio Torres, Charles Auslander, Dr. Peter Gorski, Rachel Spector, Melissa Fernandez and Shameka Jenkins, director of EKA. Photo by: Shawntravia Pointville

Last week Wednesday, three daycares received a visit from some of Miami’s top advocate programs for early childhood education.

David Lawrence, executive director and founder of the Early Childhood Initiative Foundation was in attendance when he and others stopped by Sheyes Learning Center, Excel Kids Academy and Room To Bloom daycare.

Charles M. Auslander, president and CEO of Children’s Trust; Evelio Torres, president and CEO of the Early Learning Coalition; Dr. Peter Gorski, chief health and child development officer of the Children’s Trust; Rachel Spector, quality counts administrator of the Children’s Trust and Melissa Fernandez, director of quality counts of Early Learning Coalition were alongside

“I thought that it was pretty impressive that a group of people like David Lawerence, who has been an advocate for the children of our inner city to come to the schools, to try and drive that we are trying to provide,” Juanita Walker, owner of Sheyes of Miami Learning Center.

Pamela Hollingsworth, strategic initiatives of the Early Learning Coalition was pleased to make her rounds to the Excel Kids Academy, Room To Bloom and Sheyes of Miami Learning Center.

“We made a few visits today, wanting to have conversations with providers who have demonstrated their commitments to the community,” Hollingsworth said. “We fully recognize that their is a large number, we visited a small group that have demonstrated their significant investments whom support the early development needs in the community.”

Established in 2000, the Early Learning Coalition of Miami-Dade/Monroe is a nonprofit organization dedicated to ensuring early care for children.

The Coalition has served more than 50,000 children ages birth to 12 years old as well as their families.

Similar to the Coalition, the Children’s Trust, founded by retired Miami Herald Publisher David Lawrence Jr., spearheaded this initiative to achieve in collaboration with community partners to provide financial support to inner-city children and families in Miami-Dade County.

In the past, The Children’s Trust have partnered with organizations like the Miami Children’s Initiative, acting as a segue to these types of organizations providing them with the support and investments that will benefit the children of Miami-Dade.

“Miami Children’s Initiative brings multiple trainings throughout the week to owners and directors on how to run agencies and more,” Aubrina Mumford, operations and strategy of the Miami Children’s Initiative said.

“I am appreciative for all that they have done for my centers thus far and I look forward to all that they have in store for us in the future,” Shawntravia Pointville, owner and director of Excel Kids Academy said.