A Review of the Week of the Young Child 50th Anniversary in Iowa

April 10-16, 2021

We had a successful turnout for our virtual 50th WOYC Anniverary event featuring NAEYC Governing Board President and author of the recently published book, Graceful Leadership in Early Childhood Education, Ann McClain Terrell.

Governor Kim Reynolds Signs Week of the Young Child Proclamation
The week following WOYC, April 18 through 24, was National Volunteer Week. During National Volunteer Week Save the Children Action Network (SCAN) did a shout out for Kelly Donnelly. "Kelly Donnelly is a champion for kids in Iowa. Her advocacy has helped put pressure on lawmakers to increase pre-k funding. She’s conducted on-camera interviews, testified, texted and emailed leaders.
This #NationalVolunteerWeek, we're celebrating volunteers like Kelly. Thank you for your passion to #InvestInKids!"
East Central Chapter (Benton, Iowa, Johnson, Linn, Tama, and Poweshiek counties)
The East Central Chapter in Johnson County has a long tradition of working with the Iowa Children's Museum, 4Cs Community Coordinated Childcare, Johnson County ECI, ChildServe, and the local libraries in Johnson County. Our work has for years been a communal project, reflecting the care of many in our community for the issues faced by educators, families, and the larger community. COVID has forced the committee to be creative this year, so rather than their annual legislators' breakfast they are sending their local legislators a gift card for coffee, a bagel, and a bookmark with current policy issues for them to keep in mind. In addition the ICM is hosting a socially distant evening at the museum for child care providers and their families, and the annual "Child at Heart" award will be awarded.
Cedar Rapid's Week of the Young Child Proclamation signed by Mayor Brad Hart
Miranda Niemi Owner of Collins Aerospace Day Academy and Mayor of Marion, Nicolas AbouAssaly
Marion's Week of the Young Child Proclamation signed by Mayor Nicolas AbouAssaly
Johnson County Week of the Young Child Proclamation signed by Pat Heiden, Chairperson, Johnson County Board of Supervisors
Jeff Caps (executive director of Iowa Children's Museum),  Jeni Van Buer (Grantwood AEA),  Rachel Kongshaug (ChildServe of Iowa City), Mary Lukas (winner), Deidra Benser (co-chair of the WOYC Committee & AEYC member)
Congratulations to Mary Lukas, recipient of the "Child at Heart" award presented by Iowa Children’s Museum. 

Each April since 2014, a team of early childhood education professionals and other community volunteers in Eastern Iowa have honored an educator as part of the Celebration of the Young Child. The "Child at Heart" award recognizes extraordinary service to children and families, with past winners spanning a range of child-focused sectors throughout the Corridor. The planning committee generates nominations and votes on the winner each year, focusing on those who have made it their life's work to help ensure that all kids throughout our area have access to quality early childhood educational experiences.  The 2021 winner was Mary Lukas! 
Mid-Iowa Chapter (Boone, Dallas, Jasper, Madison, Marion, Marshall, Polk, Story, and Warren counties)
50 Ways to Celebrate 50 Years of WOYC
Advocacy Color Page Celebrate-This is for you to print off and encourage children to add their creative touch. Display in your program/classroom, share in community business boards, post as you see fit. (Note-avoid posting child photos without parent or guardian written approval.)
Mayor Brian Hatch signed a Week of the Young Child at Knoxville's West Elementary School with Brian Kingrey.
Knoxville's Week of the Young Child Proclamation signed by Mayor Brian Hatch
Mayor Joel Greer: "Locally, the tornado, pandemic, and derecho have highlighted the need for quality early child care and education. I encourage employers, educators, legislators, and parents to recognize this need and collaborate to meet it."
Marshalltown's Week of the Young Children Proclamation signed by Mayor Joel Greer
Click here to read the article "Proclamation about raising awareness for child care shortage," an article in the Times-Republican.
North Central Chapter (Calhoun, Emmet, Hamilton, Humboldt, Kossuth, Palo Alto, Pocahontas, Webster, and Wright counties)
The North Central Chapter leadership encourages centers and homes to reach out to their mayors to have proclamations signed and also to do some activities in their programs.
Mayor Larry Runyan signed a Week of the Young Child Proclamation while visiting the Stratford Early Learning Center.
Stratford's Week of the Young Children Proclamation signed by Mayor Larry Runyan
Kicking off Artsy Thursday at Stratford Early Learning Center
North Iowa Chapter (Cerro Gordo, Chickasaw, Floyd, Hancock, Howard, Mitchell, Winnebago, and Worth counties)
Mason City's Week of the Young Child Proclamation signed by Mayor Bill Schickel.
Rolling Prairie Chapter (Appanoose, Davis, Keokuk, Mahaska, and Wapello counties)
The Rolling Prarie Chapter is having an online celebration on Thursday, April 15. This event will be held from 6:30-7:30 p.m. thru Zoom. It is an opportunity for members to network with others. One basket of gold-themed goodies and two gift bags of gold-thememd craft materials will be given away to three lucky participants. Participants are encouraged to dress up and enjoy snacks at their individual locations during the Zoom.
Southwest Chapter (Adair, Adams, Cass, Fremont, Mills, Montgomery, Page, Pottawattamie, and Taylor counties)
Jill Powell, Merilee Mescher, and Mike and Jean Stiehl from the Southwest Chapter of Iowa AEYC's Leadership displaying Council Bluffs' WOYC Proclamation 
Council Bluffs Week of the Young Child Proclamation signed by Mayor Matthew J. Walsh