April is Care Workers Recognition Month

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April is Care Workers Recognition Month, an observance that honors the extraordinary contributions of care workers who watch over our children, assist our parents, and support loved ones with disabilities. The observance is a major milestone towards transforming the way this country treats care and caregivers, and shines a national spotlight upon the millions of Black, Latinx, and immigrant women of color who care for our communities, our homes and our families.

In celebration of Care Workers Recognition Month, here are a few of our greatest hits and related reads:

 

Reach and Influence: Raising Child Care Fund Turns 5!

In 2019, ECFC launched the Raising Child Care Fund (RCCF) as a new response to the ongoing child care crisis. RCCF grew as foundations responded to the devastating impact of the pandemic on child care programs closing and parents struggling to balance family and work.¬†¬†Over the past five years, RCCF has embarked on an incredible journey shifting resources to expand the reach and influence of community-based organizations working towards transformational change. RCCF has raised $17M from private foundations, and to date has funded community organizers in 17 states who are working with parents and providers to transform our failing child care system.¬† Just in time to celebrate Care Workers Recognition Month, RCCF’s 2023 Reach and Influence Report highlights the reach and influence of our grantee partners in 2023 and amplifies the lessons they are teaching us.

Empowering Mothers of Color as Advocates for Policy Change

Speaking of the reach and influence of Raising Child Care Fund (RCCF) grantee partners, RCCF Grantee Partner, Danielle Atkinson, founder and national executive director of Mothering Justice, shares insights and strategies for empowering mothers of color to get policies that work for all mothers as part of the Foundation for Child Development’s Social Justice for Young Children Conversation Series.

 

The Care Economy Landscape

At some point, every one of us will need care or need to provide care. The COVID-19 pandemic put a spotlight on the extraordinary contributions of caregivers and exposed the failings caused by our nation’s lack of care policies, especially for communities of color. Deploying narrative-change strategies across care-related issues will help create the conditions for cultural and policy progress.

ECFC partnered with five philanthropy serving organizations, with support from the Care for All with Respect and Equity (CARE) Fund, to better understand the “Care Economy”, an intersectional and intergenerational issue encompassing various fields of care (including child care, elder care, healthcare) and supports for care workers (such as paid leave worker rights and protections).¬† At some point, every one of us will need care or need to provide care. The COVID-19 pandemic put a spotlight on the extraordinary contributions of caregivers and exposed the failings caused by our nation‚Äôs lack of care policies, especially for communities of color. Deploying narrative-change strategies across care-related issues will help create the conditions for cultural and policy progress. The goal of this initiative is to share with funders the promising narrative-change strategies and tactics that have been identified, a directory of funders and grantees who are supporting this work, and how philanthropy can best support this effort.

White House Month of Action on Care

This year, the White House acknowledged Care Worker Recognition Month by announcing a month of action on care and new actions in partnership with the Small Business Administration (SBA) to support small businesses that offer child care for millions of working families. Read the White House 2024 Proclamation on Care Workers Recognition Month, and learn more about new actions announced in this White House fact sheet.

Honor A Caregiver

The National Domestic Workers Alliance is celebrating care workers with a month of events focused on the care economy policy.  You can also join their celebration by honoring a caregiver who has made an impact on your life.

Care Matters: A 2024 Report Card for Policies in the States

The Century Foundation’s 2024 Care Matters Report, co-authored with Caring Across Generations, grades each state on a number of supportive family policies and worker rights and protections, such as paid sick and paid family leave, pregnant worker fairness, and the domestic worker bill of rights. The first report released in 2021 revealed tremendous gaps in state care policies and a fragmented and insufficient system of care workers and families in most states.¬†This 2024 update¬†looks at state progress on essential care policies over the last five years. Of note, the top five highlighted states in the 2024 report have Raising Child Care Fund grassroots partners (Oregon, Massachusetts, California, Colorado, and Minnesota).

 

 

Photo credit: Photo by Aditya Romansa on Unsplash

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