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The Vision of Smart Beginnings:  All children will enter kindergarten healthy and ready to succeed in school and life.

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About Smart Beginnings Southside

Smart Beginnings (SBS) was founded in 2010 and is one of 29 coalitions in Virginia who are trying to improve the care and education of preschool children.  SBS is funded in part by the Virginia Early Childhood Foundation and also receives some private and some public funds.  SBS covers Planning District 13:  the Virginia counties of Brunswick, Halifax and Mecklenburg.

 the building process

SBS is in the process of building a system of parents, agencies/organizations and businesses that work with preschoolers and their families to improve early childhood.

SBS has completed a community needs assessment and is finalizing a long-term strategic plan.  A Leadership Council and a Coalition Team have been established.  We have partnered with the school systems and higher education institutes, the libraries, community service board, social services, Head Start, health providers, the YMCA, the cooperative extension service, United Way, and others. 

The foundation that SBS is building will help ensure Southside's children have the skills needed for 21st century jobs.  Ready for school—Ready for life.

 plans for the future

SBS has chosen three (3) focus areas to develop:

  • Early Care & Education

FACT:  Most of the preschoolers in Southside Virginia do not attend preschools—many are cared for by babysitters or family members.

ACTION:  SBS will look at what educational programs are available and how they can be expanded to improve childhood care skills.

  • Parent Education

FACT:  18 to 20% of all children are born to mothers with less than 12th grade education in Southside Virginia. 

ACTION:  SBS will study current informational resources and advise how to better use those resources.  Example:  Assign a centralized place (web site, local stores) to post information that parents can use. 

  • Health Services

FACT:  Some of Southside Virginia's preschool children are not getting good nutrition and are not being immunized properly. 

ACTION:  SBS will examine what health care resources are available and how to better use those resources.

SBS is committed to improving the care and education of preschool children which will not only improve the children's kindergarten performance but it has been show that investing in a child's early childhood development yields tremendous economic and social benefits.  Ready for school—Ready for life.

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INFORMATION FOR PARENTS

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2013 EARLY CHILDHOOD COUNTY PROFILES

Click here to view Brunswick County

Click here to view Halifax County

Click here to view Mecklenburg County

SO, WHAT CAN YOU DO RIGHT NOW?

  • Host an event featuring a member of a Smart Beginnings Southside speakers bureau. 

  • Spread the word about Smart Beginnings Southside in your workplace.

  • Make an in-kind donation.

For more information, please visit the Smart Beginnings Virginia Site:

www.smartbeginnings.org

Questions or comments? Get in touch with us at:

edwina.gill@southside.edu

Mailing Address:

Smart Beginnings Southside
109 Campus Drive
Alberta, VA 23821

Phone: 434-949-6612

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