The Region A Partnership for Children (RAPC) is celebrating 20 years of success with Smart Start this year! Smart Start is the nationally recognized, statewide early childhood initiative that creates, coordinates and mobilizes resources for children birth to five years old and their families. This year, the RAPC will honor Champions for Children in western North Carolina who have demonstrated strong advocacy and dedication to promoting opportunities for children in our communities to fulfill their full potential.
The RAPC will accept nominations of Champions for Children for a Grant Award from the Carolina Mountain Trust for Children and Youth, the endowment sponsored by the Region A Partnership for Children, created to honor and recognize child and youth advocates. Grants totaling $2,000 will be awarded at a 20 Year Smart Start Celebration and Gala, to be held on Nov. 16 at the Southwestern Community College, Burrell Center in Sylva.
Champions for Children here in Region A, (Cherokee, Clay, Graham, Haywood, Jackson, Macon and Swain Counties and the Cherokee Indian Reservation) recognize that healthy environments and good support during the first 2000 days of a child’s life, between birth and the first day of Kindergarten, are crucial in ensuring lifelong success. Smart Start provides strong support for children during those first 2000 days. Go to www.first2000days.org to learn about the importance of the first 2000 days of a child’s life.
In recognition of 20 years of Smart Start work on behalf of children in Western North Carolina, RAPC is asking individuals and organizations across the seven counties to nominate a Champion for Children with a letter or e-mail describing how the nominee has worked to promote opportunities for children to achieve success in life. Nominations should describe the community in which the nominated Champion has worked and served children and families and the type of work or service that has made success on behalf of children possible. Contact information for nominated Champions should be included for notification purposes. Nominations must be received by Oct. 23.
The Champions chosen for the awards will be notified by the RAPC prior to and announced at the Nov. 16 Celebration and Gala. Award amounts will be determined based on the number of Champions chosen and grant awards will be made to the charities or programs designated by the Champions chosen for awards.