10/5: Igniting Connections Early Childhood Symposium

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On Saturday, October 5, more than 200 early educators and health and family support practitioners will gather for the Third Annual Igniting Connections Early Childhood Symposium, a free day of celebration, networking and professional development at the Inn at Virginia Tech.

This symposium is the largest free conference for early education and health professionals in the Commonwealth of Virginia (and perhaps the country). Thanks to presenting and keynote sponsor, Carilion Children’s and Carilion New River Valley Medical Center, this symposium will offer outstanding presenters from all over the state and country, including seminars on subjects ranging from “Taking the Bite Out of Biting” to “Building Resiliency” to “Your Voice for Helping Children Succeed”.

Keynote Speaker will be Dr. Jayne Singer, a Harvard professor and director of Brazelton Touchpoints Center at Boston Children’s Hospital. Her talk will be on “Developmental, Relational and Trauma-Informed Frameworks for Understanding Children and Engaging Families”.

This symposium is free thanks to many sponsors, including major sponsors Carilion Clinic, the Virginia Tech Foundation, the Inn at Virginia Tech and Child Care Aware SWVA. The symposium will again bring together early educators from all settings: childcare centers, family home providers, Head Start and public PreK programs. This year for the first time, the conference’s focus has been broadened to include health and family support for young children and attendees will include NRVCS, pediatric, community health and Head Start health support staff.

The Alliance for Better Childcare Strategies is a local 501(c)3 non-profit whose mission in the N.R.V. is to
• Build the capacity of high-quality childcare and early education throughout the region
• Support quality improvement of all childcare and early education programs
• Create affordable options and supports for economically deprived families.

ABCs was created to foster high-quality fulltime childcare, an essential infrastructure for a healthy community. Quality childcare infrastructure benefits two generations. It supports working families and can end multi-generational poverty. At the same time, research shows that young children who can access quality childcare arrive at kindergarten ready to succeed both in school and in life.

For more information about the Igniting Connections Symposium or the Alliance for Better Childcare Strategies, please contact Bethany Mott, Executive Director, ABCs at bethanymott@abcsnrv.org or 540-494-7175.