June 2, 2021
2021 Legislative Wins to Support Washington Children and Families
During this year’s legislative session, WithinReach advocated for many important priorities related to equity, food access, physical and behavioral health, and early learning. We are excited to share about three key successes for children and families that tie into our chief legislative priority of building a statewide Help Me Grow system.
Help Me Grow offers families seamless access to community services and supports so they can easily connect to the resources they need, when they need them. Learn more about our legislative wins and how they will help Washington children and families thrive:
Expanding Our Resource Navigator Workforce
Leading efforts alongside advocacy champion Sen. Claire Wilson, WithinReach secured $530,000 to hire and train more resource navigators to connect Washington families with essential nutrition, health and child development resources.
The impact: We know that finding help is hard. With this funding, more families in our state will have access to the services and resources they need to be healthy and safe. This achievement is the first time Washington has funded the statewide Help Me Grow system.
Building Washington’s Early Learning System
We worked closely with early learning advocates and legislative champions to pass the Fair Start for Kids Act, a significant investment in equitable, affordable, high-quality child care and early learning. Help Me Grow will be a crucial part of this comprehensive work to support families.
The impact: The need for quality, culturally and linguistically relevant early learning is essential to protect communities and dismantle barriers to opportunity. This bill will provide the largest investment in early learning and child care in state history to help achieve this.
Paving the Way for Optimal Health and Development
The third legislative success relates to building a strong connection between Help Me Grow and Paid Family Leave. The budget includes a directive for the Employment Security Department to connect Paid Family Leave beneficiaries with Help Me Grow so that families can easily access important health and development resources.
The impact: This partnership will ensure that more families with young children, prenatal through age 5, get seamlessly connected to the services and community resources they need to thrive. Linking these two statewide systems is a significant step forward in building a Help Me Grow system throughout Washington.