President and Chairman of the Board's Letter
Inspire minds. Change lives.
From President Barack Obama’s 2014 State of the Union address to a steady influx of news stories, the drumbeat for transformative change in early education is growing louder every day. And as more Americans recognize the role early childhood education can play in breaking the cycle of poverty, the time is ripe to capitalize on this energy.
Leading our field with program, policy and research expertise, the Ounce of Prevention Fund is uniquely positioned to shape this national issue. For more than 30 years, we have steadfastly pursued a single goal: to increase the access to and quality of early childhood education that unlocks the potential within children living in poverty. We are pleased to report significant progress in achieving this goal this year.
We continue to build solutions designed to reach more children and families in need than ever before, broaden our impact and drive greater outcomes. We are enhancing the skills of early childhood professionals, empowering parents to become leaders of their families and communities, and coaching partners and influencing policymakers.
We feel great urgency in our work: More than 6 million young children in poverty are counting on all of us to help them achieve their dreams. In addition to those we serve directly, we touch the lives of all children and families living in poverty by building the tools and supports to effect systemic change.
We know that we can’t do it alone. We are proud to partner with other advocates, experts and researchers; with local, state and federal governments; with community-based programs and national organizations; and with business leaders, philanthropists and all champions for young children.
In the coming pages, we highlight recent projects to improve quality, to reach more children and families and to drive greater impact. We are grateful for your ongoing support and hope you will continue to join us in launching the dreams of children, families, communities and our nation.
Diana Mendley Rauner
Anne Lea Tuohy
Chairman of the Board
of professional development for home visitors in Illinois
children and families nationwide served by center- and homebased early learning professionals developed by the Ounce
program leaders, supervisors and home visitors provided feedback and data for the creation of the online program
percentage of home visitors in Illinois developed by the Ounce
Building a Stronger Early Childhood Workforce
As a home visiting supervisor at the Jefferson Area Children's Health Improvement Program, Juliana Weaver provides vital support to home visitors working directly with children and families in need. Ten home visitors, each with a caseload of up to 25 families, rely on Juliana—a responsibility she does not take lightly. "I miss working directly with families and watching kids grow up," she says, "but this gives me the opportunity to pass to people some of my experience."
Juliana's charge is to give her home visitors the structure, training and resources to excel at their jobs and better serve the children in their care. Home visitors become a part of families' lives, which makes their jobs incredibly rewarding but also incredibly challenging. Juliana sees that struggle every day in the home visitors she supports. For every home visiting success story, there is a different family in crisis. The home visitor must rise above the crisis to help the parents build strong bonds with their children.
Juliana works tirelessly to find professional development opportunities that prepare her home visitors for the new challenges that come up daily when working with families. She seeks out training that focuses on how to structure visits and build partnerships with families to promote their self-sufficiency.
Juliana is one of the many home visitors across the country providing valuable feedback on our new Online Home Visiting Professional Development program to ensure it is relevant and powerful for professionals in the field. She lives for that moment when her team members are engaged with their families and see the impact of their work.
Home visiting is a powerful early intervention that is proven to increase positive birth outcomes for children, increase children's literacy and high school graduation rates, and decrease rates of child abuse and neglect.
As impactful as home visiting is for families, the profession faces high turnover and quick burnout due to the emotional demands on home visitors. Professional development instills confidence in home visitors, increases job satisfaction and improves interactions with families, building a better trained, more impactful workforce and better outcomes for children and families.
Expanding on our 30 years of home visiting professional development experience in Illinois, the Ounce made significant progress this year toward offering affordable, high-quality professional development to home visitors nationwide. Seed investments from the Bezos Family Foundation, Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, Joshua J. and Eunice Stone Foundation, Oscar G. & Elsa S. Mayer Family Foundation, and Pritzker Children's Initiative helped the Ounce pilot our new Online Home Visiting Professional Development program.
This comprehensive program—the first of its kind—enables home visitors across the country to access high-quality training anytime, anywhere. It's built with the end user in mind, offering practical advice from experts who have lived the role of home visitor. The courses offer useful tips, tools and real-life examples in a range of formats designed to meet the needs of different learning styles.
In the coming months, we'll complete our pilot of the first learning series. In the first year of the launch, we anticipate reaching 500 home visitors with the online program, expanding our impact to an additional 8,000 children and families across the country.
Home visitors become a part of families' lives, which makes their jobs incredibly rewarding but also incredibly challenging.
Ultimately, we will expand the reach of the Online Home Visiting Professional Development program to 20,000 home visitors across the country like Juliana and her teamto drive better outcomes for 1.5 million children and families in poverty.
Empowering parents and reaching4,000
children and families through Early Head Start and Head Start and our network of home visiting and doula programs throughout Illinois
increase in Educare Chicago Alumni Network
Nurturing strong parentchild bonds across our Educare Learning Network, reaching3,000
children and families daily
formal family interactions and events at Educare Chicago annually
Empowering Parents as Leaders
"Educare Chicago opened my eyes to what’s available for my son and what’s available for me. When you know better, you do better. It gave me ammunition to be a pushy parent where my son is concerned," says Monica, parent of a child in the first Educare Chicago graduating class.
Nine years after leaving Educare Chicago, mothers of the first graduating class all still point to the school as instrumental in helping steer their children toward success.
Parents highlight the supports they received while their children were developing the social-emotional and cognitive skills they needed to be ready for kindergarten. Parents learned tools and strategies to be engaged in and strong advocates for their children’s continued education.
"My parenting skills grew from workshops, and I learned what to expect at different ages. I wouldn’t have been as smart of a parent if not for Educare," says another parent, Camille. She credits her daughter’s success to the support she received as a parent from Educare Chicago.
"I didn’t think what Educare offered was possible; I thought I’d be one of the statistics," says Temeika, a teen mom when she enrolled her daughter in Educare. "The staff at Educare Chicago was there to support me. They gave me the motivation to graduate high school and go to college." For many parents like Temeika, the school put dreams within reach by highlighting and providing resources and supports available to young parents.
There’s a greater chance for children’s long-term success when parents are involved in their education. The Ounce two-generation approach honors the important role that parents play and offers support systems to help them inspire what’s possible for their children and themselves..
To create new supports and shape existing ones to best fit the needs of parents, the Ounce worked extensively with parents, staff and educators across the Educare Learning Network and our partner Head Start and home visiting programs to inform our thinking. We asked parents questions like: What challenges do you face daily? What tools would help? Whom do you rely on for advice? We asked our teachers, family support specialists, doulas and home visitors what strategies are working and what tools they wish they could offer parents.
We then paired these first-hand insights with our family support expertise and research that has been generously supported by the Alvin H. Baum Family Fund, Dr. Scholl Foundation, Northern Trust, Polk Bros. Foundation and W. Clement & Jessie V. Stone Foundation.
We heard our parents ask for stronger home-to-school connections to better reinforce their children’s classroom learning at home. From activities in the classroom, to pick-up and drop-off conversations, to parent educational sessions, staff at Educare Schools across the Network continually capitalize on opportunities to engage parents as allies in their children’s educational success.
Many of our parents want to connect with parents like themselves—those who may face similar challenges and backgrounds. They want to share with each other, get advice, celebrate achievements and help each other through tough times. The Educare Chicago Alumni Network is one way we help our parents meet each other. This year, membership grew by 80%and now spans from parents of kindergartners to parents of high schoolers.
We found that parents also underestimate the power of their own voices in advocating for their children. To build their confidence and show the impact they can have, we give themtools and training to speak up on behalf of their children and communities. Many of our Head Start and Educare parents joined us in Springfield for our Early Childhood Advocacy Day last April and saw the power their voices could have.
We all seek financial stability and have our own dreams to pursue. One such parent, Beatrice, credits Educare Chicago staff with giving her the confidence and motivation to attend college and open her own successful home day care business. Our family support staff, home visitors, doulas and teachers are helping parents daily as they forge their own paths ahead.
Thanks to seed investments from the Buffett Early Childhood Fund, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Irving Harris Foundation, George Kaiser Family Foundation and W.K. Kellogg Foundation, we are proud to be developing and ultimately providing new tools and supports for parents. By strengthening parents’ confidence as their children’s first teacher and staunchest advocate, we shape the future for generations of children.
Leading the National Early Learning Movement
Like many Early Head Start grantees, Educare Oklahoma City’s parent organization, Sunbeam Family Services, wrestled with how to serve more low-income working families struggling to find high-quality care and education for their children.
The new federal Early Head Start-Child Care Partnership grants presented an exciting opportunity to reach more children and families with high-quality early education. The federal grants encourage Early Head Start programs and child care programs to partner and jointly provide comprehensive, highquality services to infants and toddlers and their families. With just over two months to prepare a quality application, Educare Oklahoma City set out to find local child care providers, forge a partnership with them and navigate the application process.
With this daunting challenge ahead for Early Head Start programs nationwide, the Educare Learning Network team at the Ounce set out to provide individual consultation, peer-learning opportunities and resources and tools. Educare Oklahoma City as well as other schools across the Network tapped into this assistance to meet the application deadline.
"We are so fortunate to have worked with the Ounce. Being able to share ideas and concerns with top experts across the country elevated the conversations and truly moved our partnership program design ahead 10 years!" said Adrienne Elder, Sunbeam Family Services grant writer.
When President Obama announced a renewed focus on quality preschool in his 2012 State of the Union address, early childhood champions across the country cheered to see early learning on the national stage. The Ounce immediately saw an opportunity to shift the dialogue on early education beyond the traditional preschool years to reflect the broader birth-to-agefive window. We embarked on a journey to educate policymakers on the importance of a child’s first three years. Together with the First Five Years Fund, we met with people in high levels of the Obama administration to informand influence their position. We relentlessly created opportunities for us to share our point of view.
We were excited and proud to note our influence paid off. Early Head Start- Child Care Partnership grants designed to produce better outcomes for children during those critical first three years were included in the White House Plan for Early Education and subsequent budget request.
Securing funding was just the first step; tomake an impact, it was essential to structure the grants to best support quality programming. The administration looked to us for strategic guidance, and we created numerous opportunities to share our expertise. We quickly assembled an integrated team of our own program and policy experts and Educare School leaders from across the country to inform the design of this opportunity.We led conversations that engaged leaders from the federal Administration for Children and Families (ACF), Office of Child Care, Office of Head Start and Educare Schools.
Our leadership came to fruition when the final Early Head Start-Child Care Partnership grant application released last June reflected many key Ounce recommendations. Educare’s hallmark model of blending multiple funding streams forms the foundation for the ACF’s approach to supporting highquality service delivery through these partnerships. With $650 million in funding attached, these new grants are expected to serve nearly 45,000 additional infants and toddlers from low-income families with more comprehensive early care and education services.
After shaping this federal opportunity, the Ounce intentionally chose to galvanize a collective vision of what quality partnerships would look like. We provided assistance to schools across the Educare Learning Network as well as to Early Head Start partners in Illinois. We are proud to say we harnessed the power of our expertise and national and local partnerships to provide critical technical assistance to increase the quality of applications across the country.
Thanks to the investment of the Grand Victoria Foundation, the Irving Harris Foundation, the Pritzker Children’s Initiative and the Robert R. McCormick Foundation, the Ounce helped Early Head Start-Child Care Partnership applicants fromacross Illinois request funds to serve 3,500 additional children. Across the country, 14 Educare Schools applied for funding to support more than 2,000 additional children through 100 new child care partnerships.
Every day, Jan Stepto Millett faces a tough challenge: how does she help her team of early learning educators better prepare their children for kindergarten…and beyond? As Vice President of Early Childhood Services at Children’s Home + Aid (CH + A), Jan and her team serve young children in the metro Chicago area. The opportunity to make an impact on their lives is great. She needed a solution that would not only be effective but would create buy-in from her teachers as well as her administrators. Would the Ounce job-embedded professional development program be that solution?
"The approach seemed to make perfect sense," Jan says, reflecting on routines of collaboration and the need for a supportive learning environment that are integral to our job-embedded approach to professional development. "But it is also grounded in research, which gave it much more weight in my mind."
But would the approach work where it counts?
CH + A family and children’s center in Schaumburg, Ill., became one of four pilot sites for our federal Investing in Innovation grant. And our job-embedded approach was put to the test. The pilot program was so successful that Jan wanted to the Ounce to work with her Englewood facility, where we have been implementing a more robust version of our approach.
"We have drunk the Kool-Aid," laughs Jan, "and I mean this as a good thing! This program has made and will continue to make a lasting impact on early childhood learning at Children’s Home + Aid."
"It’s already affecting how we hire and shaping how we look at various roles within the administration," she continues. "But most significantly, our CLASS scores are increasing, as a direct result of this work. And that is where the rubber hits the road."
Recognizing that our approach to professional development is making a difference where it counts, Jan is rolling out the program to other locations in her region. And with the help of the Ounce, CH +A is changing the lives of children, from one center in Schaumburg to thousands across the state.
The situation is disconcerting: The majority of early childhood programs across the country simply do not prepare high-needs children for kindergarten. At the same time, research indicates that the key to program success is highly effective teachers and staff; but traditional teacher development programs weren’t producing the results needed to set millions of young children on the path to success.
At the Ounce, we recognized that we had the makings of a new approach to professional development—one modeled and honed in our own Educare Schools. A federal grant called Investing in Innovation funded our pilot this new form of professional development, one that recognizes the complexity of teaching and learning, relies on routines of collaboration among all levels of teachers and helps to create child-centered learning environments. Our four successful pilots—which resulted in higher outcomes for children—are leading to more work with organizations like Children’s Home + Aid.
At the same time, we are pursuing new opportunities to transform the field of early learning at scale, and our efforts are rapidly coming to fruition. In August, the Ounce was awarded a new federal grant to provide training and technical assistance to leaders and supervisors in 240 early learning programs across Illinois. With our assistance, these programs will embed professional development into their culture, structures and routines. And like Jan, they will have one goal in mind: to achieve the highest levels of quality in their school or center-based settings, giving their children the best chance for a successful future.
Statement of Financial Position
|Cash and cash equivalents||$5,889,562||$1,955,307||$1,051,111||$8,895,980|
|Accounts receivable – governmental agencies and other||5,604,140||542||171,452||(193,853)||$5,582,281|
|Pledges receivable, current||2,457,036||1,000,000||$3,457,036|
|Deposits, prepaid expenses and other assets||186,701||80,778||$267,479|
|Total current assets||14,137,439||3,036,627||1,222,563||(193,853)||18,202,776|
|Donor- and Board-designated||24,402,664||$24,402,664|
|Pledges Receivable, Net Of Current Portion||1,954,670||$1,954,670|
|Property, Plant And Equipment, Net||6,482,615||17,244||$6,499,859|
|* New Market Tax Credit transaction for Educare of Washington, DC|
|Liabilities And Net Assets|
|Accounts payable and accrued expenses||$5,389,837||$515,650||$146,026||$(193,853)||$5,857,660|
|Total current liabilities||5,874,824||515,650||146,026||(193,853)||6,342,647|
|Total net assets||42,403,035||2,538,221||11,776,607||–||56,717,863|
|Total Liabilities And Net Assets||$49,199,205||$3,053,871||$11,922,633||$(193,853)||$63,981,856|
Statement of Activities
|Revenue and other support|
|Illinois Department of Human Services||$12,276,586|
|Illinois Department of Children and Family Services||$10,595|
|Illinois State Board of Education||$1,767,090|
|Illinois National Governors Association||$25,000|
|US Department of Health and Human Services||$14,095,775|
|US Department of Education||$1,038,309|
|US Department of Agriculture||$120,489|
|Chicago Public Schools||$1,791,858|
|Corporations, foundations, trusts||$13,784,942|
|Interest, investment income and other revenue||$4,722,666|
|Loss on uncollectible pledges receivable||$(7,000)|
|Total revenue and other support||$53,415,148|
|Child and Family Support Services||$8,326,081|
|Illinois Birth to Three Institute||$1,691,068|
|Program services sites – pass through||$17,115,642|
|Educare Learning Network||$2,346,404|
|Special projects/program innovations||$4,356,130|
|First Five Years Fund||$4,302,774|
|Total program services||$47,631,878|
|General and administrative activities||$5,691,756|
|Fundraising and special events||$1,553,292|
|Total supporting services||$7,245,048|
Ounce of Prevention Fund Donors
Consecutive DonorsThe Ounce is grateful to the following donors for their long-time commitment to the Ounce through consecutive annual donations.
DONORS FOR 20 YEARS OR MORE
DONORS FOR 10 YEARS OR MORE
Lifetime GivingThe Ounce is proud to recognize the following donors for their significant lifetime investment in the Ounce and its mission to help all children achieve their potential.
$5,000,000 OR MORE
$1,000,000 TO $4,999,999
$500,000 TO $999,999
$250,000 TO $499,999
$100,000 TO $249,999
Annual DonorsThe Ounce honors all our donors for their gifts, pledges and payments this year from July 1, 2013, through June 30, 2014.
$1,000,000 AND ABOVE
$500,000 TO $999,999
$100,000 TO $499,999
$50,000 TO $99,999
$25,000 TO $49,999
$10,000 TO $24,999
$5,000 TO $9,999
$2,500 TO $4,999
$500 TO $2,499
$1 TO $499
IN MEMORY OF
In honor of
Greater Illinois Offices, Partners & SitesLa Voz Latina
Archdiocese of Chicago/
Jadonal E. Ford Center for
Association of Illinois
Department of Public Health
Behavioral Health Center
Offices, Partners & SitesMetropolitan Family Services
West Side Healthy Beginnings
Unidos Formando Un Futuro
Development Center II
Development Center I
Chicago Young Parents
Healthy Families Illinois
Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center
Aunt Martha's Administration
Aunt Martha's Center for Children's Services
Aunt Martha's Park Forest Center
Aunt Martha's Riverdale Site
Casa Central Community Service Center
Casa Central ABC
Catholic Charities of the Archdioceses of Chicago/Jadonal E. Ford Center for Parenting Programs
Centers for New Horizons Dawson Center
Child Abuse Council
Children's Home + Aid Englewood Center
Children's Home + Aid Society
Children's Home + Aid VIVA
Children's Home Association of Illinois
Children's Place Association Family Center
Children's Place Association Home Visiting
Comprehensive Behavioral Health Center
Easter Seals Children's Development Center
Family Focus—Englewood Healthy Families Illinois
Family Focus— Lawndale
Fayette County Health Department
Healthy Parents and Babies
La Voz Latina
Marillac Social Center
Metropolitan Family Services
New Moms, Inc.
One Hope United Bridgeport Child Development Center I
One Hope United Bridgeport Child Development Center II
One Hope United Edgewater Center
One Hope United Waukegan
Ounce Administrative Office
Pilsen Wellness Center Unidos Formando Un Futuro
Sangamon County Department of Public Health
SGA Youth and Family Services
Shawnee Health Service and Development Corporation
Stephenson County Health Department
Teen Parent Connection
United Methodist Children's Home
VNA Health Care
Will County Health Department
YMCA of Metropolitan Chicago West Side Healthy Beginnings
YWCA of Metropolitan Chicago Young Parents Program
National Office, Partners & Sites
as of September 2014
California at Silicon Valley
Central Maine (Waterville)
Kansas City, KS
Omaha at Kellom
Omaha at Indian Hill
Tulsa at Kendall-Whittier
Tulsa at Hawthorne
Tulsa at MacArthur
Board of Directors
Irving B. Harris
Anne Lea Tuohy
Chairman of the Board
Billie Wright Adams,M.D.
Curt R. Bailey
Francis Beidler, III
Denise A. Bunning
Deborah Daro, Ph.D.
Kelly King Dibble
Lula M. Ford
Keith Kiley Goldstein
Marcia "Rusty" Hellman
Timothy J. Landon
Virginia F. Oviedo
Isabel Navarrete Polsky,M.D.
Raul I. Raymundo
Cari B. Sacks
Manuel "Manny" Sanchez
J.M. "Jim" Schultz
Catherine M. Siegel
Harrison I. Steans
Honorary Founding Director
Honorary Founding Director
Remembering Joyce Skoog
February 21, 1940 – January 25, 2014
Joyce was a long-time champion of children and families, with a deep commitment to helping young mothers raise their children with awareness and understanding. Her leadership at the Ounce, as a board member for 15 years and board chair for three, was instrumental in our growth as an organization and as national advocates for at-risk children and families. Joyce understood the crucial role of parents as their child's first teachers and she was an early supporter of doula and home visiting programs. As board chair, she led the Ounce through unparalleled growth and change — as we strengthened birth-to-five programs in Illinois, expanded our impact in states across the country, and relocated and rebranded the organization.
Joyce and her husband Roy raised their four children in Hinsdale, where she worked with numerous civic and community organizations. She served as the village of Hinsdale's first and only female village president from 1993-1997. Prior to that, Joyce was a village plan commissioner, trustee, fire and police commissioner and a member of the Zoning Board of Appeals. Joyce retired in 2002 as senior vice president for institutional advancement at Aspen Institute following a career in community relations, fund development and communications. Her children proudly remember that despite her many civic and professional commitments, Joyce's family always came first.
Joyce was an invaluable leader for the Ounce for many, many years. We remain deeply grateful for her vision, her leadership and her dedication to helping all children achieve their potential.
Education & Outreach Committee
Robyn M. Schuster
Amy S. Timm
Diana Mendley Rauner
Chief Operating Officer
Senior Vice President, Programs and Training
Senior Vice President, Program Innovation
Chief Marketing Officer
Senior Vice President, Research and Policy Initiatives
Elliot M. Regenstein
Senior Vice President, Advocacy and Policy
Senior Vice President, Educare Learning Network
Information Technology and Management
Vice President, People
Vice President, Development
Vice President, Strategy and Partnerships
Vice President, Resource and Capacity Building
Vice President, Finance
Vice President, Training
First Five Years Fund
The Ounce of Prevention Fund gives children in poverty the best chance for success in school and in life by advocating for and providing the highest quality care and education from birth to age five.