Welcoming Families Initiative


An Urban Institute study found that in low-income families, approximately 69% of all childcare is provided by family, friends, or neighbors. Nearly 45% of first-generation Hispanic/Latino children live in poverty, and an estimated 75% of preschool children in low-income families use Spanish as their primary language. The realities these young children face have powerful implications for their success in K-12 and post-secondary education. 

Geared toward families with limited access to other early childhood education opportunities, Early Learning Readiness (ELR) is a free bilingual curriculum that teaches caregivers how to help preschool-aged children who are in their care to learn through play. Our findings show that 90% of the children in the program increase their ability to follow directions, 85% increase self-confidence, and 89% know their ABCs and numbers by the time they finish. With a focus on building confidence in the caregivers themselves, the ELR program supports a strong educational foundation in the child’s early years to ensure that they start kindergarten primed and ready to learn.

Click here for an informational flyer in Spanish.


Celebrated each year in September, Welcoming Week elevates the growing movement of communities that fully embrace new Americans and their contributions to the social fabric of our country. It’s a chance for neighbors — both immigrants and U.S.-born residents — to get to know one another and celebrate what unites us as a community. Visit our calendar of events to find out what’s going on at your local Y for Welcoming Week!

Welcoming Families at the YMCA of Coastal Georgia