Vail Daily letter: Giving our kids the best start | VailDaily.com

Vail Daily letter: Giving our kids the best start

July 13, the Vail Daily published an article titled "Report points to lack of child care in Eagle County" outlining the costs of child care and the implications for children, especially for newborns and infants. I am grateful for the attention called to this issue. I work with and sit on the board of Bright by Three, a Colorado 501(c)(3).

Bright by Three offers parents of children aged 0­ to 3, tools, information and resources to empower them to be the first and most influential teacher in their child's life! Bright by Three's programs are free for Colorado parents and caregivers of children aged 0­ to 3.

Bright by Three acknowledges that creating quality, accessible and affordable child care will not be solved through one organization. Rather, as stated in the article, it will take efforts from businesses and communities to understand the importance of a child care and prioritize a solution.

While working to create solutions, Bright by Three can give parents and caregivers research-based tips, tools and resources, so they feel confident they are giving their child the best start in life. Most important is the ability of this program to meet parents and caregivers where they are. The organization not only provides home visits, but also through the "Bright by Text" Program sends thoughtful parenting tips straight to parents' and caregivers' cellphones via text message.

As a parent you can sign up by texting 444999 and entering the word "BRIGHT" or "BRILLANTE" for Spanish. Simply follow the prompts and you will receive informative developmentally appropriate information. In today's world, everyone has a cell phone.

In Eagle, Lake, Summit and Pitkin counties, 83 percent of families with children under 3 have at least one risk factor for developmental delay. Bright by Three is committed to reaching parents and caregivers where they are and partnering with organizations across the state, including three right here in Eagle County. We are proud to collaborate with Dillon Family & Intercultural Resource Center, Eagle County Child and Family Services, Eagle County Public Health and Vail Valley Youth Foundation to provide parents and caregivers with the tools, tips and resources they need to give their children the best start in life.

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In 2015, Bright by Three has 702 families in Eagle, Lake, Summit and Pitkin counties with 352 of those being home visits. Already in 2016, we've almost tripled that number to 1,951 families reached with the help of Bright by Text.

We continue to work hard along the Western Slope to serve families who need it most.

Elaine Kelton