Chittenden County Regional Council Recap – September 2018

Amanda Biggs
Chittenden County Regional Coordinator
Building Bright Futures




Ensuring families can access education and support opportunities in our community is a priority strategy in the Chittenden BBF Regional Action Plan. Council members gathered in early September to discuss and draft a road map of topics that we want a take a deeper dive into this year to explore how they impact young children and families and what opportunities exist to strengthen education and resources. Using the Regional Action Plan as a guide, we discussed, brainstormed, reflected, and drafted the following list of council agenda topics as a starting point:

  • Opiates & Addiction
  • Marijuana
  • Race
  • Privilege
  • Resilience
  • Food Security
  • Social Determinants of Health
  • Sexuality/Gender
  • Trauma Informed Care
  • Advocacy
  • Teacher Retention

An additional topic that we discussed at length was the lack of available child care. We see the roots of this big issue including many elements: teacher retention, wage equity, teacher wellness and access to support, and meeting all the education requirements (Act 166).  Strategies are needed to attract and retain workforce. How can we educate legislators to better understand what it takes to be a teacher and child care provider? We will look for ways to include local reps in this conversation and will be partnering with Let’s Grow Kids and the Early Childhood Alliance to hold a Legislative/Advocacy themed meeting in November.

Bright Spot

The Chittenden region is committed to improving how they support children and adults impacted by substance use disorder (SUD).  We are kicking off the first of five monthly Community of Practice planning sessions this month. A cohort of 15-18 partners will be working to identify gaps, strengthen partnerships, and build bridges across sectors and community agencies. Our goal is to integrate the child and adult system and build stronger collaboration across all service providers. We will be using Building Bright Future’ Substance Abuse Task Force Report and Recommendations (issued November 2017) as our starting point to begin to identify where gaps  exist for families in current delivery systems.

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