Willimantic Street Fests

Eastern Connecticut State University Jumpstart Children First Program

Website:
http://www.jstart.org
Email:
meaghan.penrod@jstart.org

Jumpstart for Young Children began as a project among a group of Yale students in 1993. Developed from the belief that caring relationships make a world of difference, the students designed a program pairing young children in under-resourced communities with highly-trained and committed volunteers to regularly meet and share in meaningful reading and learning experiences. From this beginning, a replicable and scalable program was born �" tapping into the enthusiasm and dedication of college students from local universities, Jumpstart recruits and trains college student volunteers to regularly deliver the Jumpstart program in preschool classrooms. Jumpstart's mission is to provide language, literacy, and social-emotional programming for preschool children in under-resourced communities and promote quality early learning for all. We pursue our vision of every child entering kindergarten prepared to succeed by focusing our work on three strategic priorities: 1. Children: Enrich the learning experiences in preschool classrooms for children from under-resourced communities. 2. Classrooms: Cultivate a high-quality early childhood education workforce. 3. Communities: Inspire public support and investment in high-quality early learning. Jumpstart's program is national, but the delivery is local. To date, Jumpstart has nationally served 98,000 children and 45,000 college student volunteers. Specifically, in Connecticut, during the 2015-2016 program year Jumpstart served 513 preschool children and engaged 210 college student volunteers in the following communities: Windham/Willimantic, New Britain and New haven. Jumpstart is a non-profit that serves the Windham/Willimantic Community with student volunteers from both Eastern Connecticut State University and the University of Connecticut.