Collective Spotlight ~ The Hartford Regional Network

The Connecticut Children’s Collective partners with local early childhood collaboratives (LECCs) from across the state that are doing amazing, innovative, system-changing work. In 2023 we started a new series: The Collective Spotlight. We have talked with directors, staff, parents, and community members who have created, improved, or brought awareness to programs and services that will better serve the children and families in their community, as well as the entire state. By sharing and learning from others, we begin to break down silos, and form a stronger, more forward moving, and innovative community of practice.

All of our LECCs are dedicated, hardworking professionals who are committed to improving the lives of children. They all deserve a spotlight, and the Collective intends to shine one on them. This Spotlight will shine on Malissa Griffith, who has thirty years of experience working in early childhood education including direct work with children and families, curriculum development, advocacy, family engagement, and statewide consulting work with a focus on play.

On June 20th Barbara Vita, the Collective’s Coordinator, interviewed four members of the self-governed Hartford Regional Network: Brianna Beckstrand, Director of Enfield KITE (Key initiatives to Early Education), Amy Yarbrough, Director of West Hartford’s Great by 8, Caitlin McNamara, Early Childhood Specialist for the Manchester Early Childhood Council, and Kimberly Bobin, Family and Early Childhood Coordinator for Wethersfield Public Schools. (Hartford and Bloomfield are also part of the Network.)

A great discussion about regional networks (within the Collective) was generated, and how these networks strengthen each local collaborative’s work. The Hartford’s Regional Network was formed due to a desire to stay informed between funding initiatives. The members of the network meet monthly and are structured and organized solely by the members good will and efforts.

To watch the full interview, click here.

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