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Denise Louie Education Center

Photo by Lisa Merrill

In order to promote success in school and community, Denise Louie Education Center (DLEC) provides quality, multi-cultural early childhood education services to low-income immigrant and refugee children and their families. They will respect and preserve each child’s individuality, cultural heritage and home language. They will promote personal and social responsibility with integrity and love in a non-sexist, non-violent, and non-racist environment. SVP supported DLEC from 2010-2015.

Total Giving: $225,000

Executive Director: Susan Yang (LinkedIn)
SVP Lead Partner: 
Sofia Michelakis (LinkedIn)

Strengthening the Denise Louie Education Center

In partnership with SVP, DLEC tackles projects like:

  • Leadership Development: DLEC’s executive director and program director received individual coaching from SVP Partner Pam Robbins and the executive director participated in the Nonprofit Leadership Institute and Table Talks, which were funded by SVP.
  • Advocacy and Policy: DLEC’s executive director worked with SVP Partner and policy advisor Frank Greer to develop strategies to advance DLEC’s public policy goals.
  • Fund Development: DLEC’s fund development team received group and individual coaching from paid consultants Emily Anthony and Julie Edsforth and furthered their fundraising strategy and grant writing efforts with SVP Partner Erin Okuno.
  • Finance: SVP Partner Mike Cadigan met regularly with DLEC’s finance committee to provide guidance and support and build the overall capacity of the team.
  • Board Development: DLEC’s board received counsel and coaching services from paid consultants Emily Anthony and Julie Edsforth as part of an overall board development plan.

SVP’s Impact — In Their Words

Thanks to the work last year with Susan Bloch, Pragya Madan, Pam Robbins and my staff HR advisory committee, I identified 18 different tasks that I wanted to work on that tied to the HR Plan. In reflecting with Pam Robbins, I realize I made progress on at least 10 of the 18 items. While I didn’t have a SVP volunteer or consultant to assist me with this year’s activities, the ground work they did last year and the support from my lead partner, Table Talks, my executive coach and the reflection and learning I took away from the Non Profit Leadership Institute (NELI) changed and improved what I do to support staff.

Last year and this I implemented an Employee Climate Survey and we saw a significant increase in all responses from last year. Of note, we saw an increase from 68% to 92% of employees stating that “my supervisor or someone at work seems to care about me as a person.” Also, 87% of employees agreed that “last month, I have received recognition or praise for doing good work,” a significant increase from 48% last year.

— Janice Deguchi, Former Executive Director

Stories about the Denise Louie Education Center

Photo by Lisa Merrill

Step into Denise Louie's Classroom

"What makes Denise Louie very special is its focus on multi-cultural education," says board member Joan Duffel. "This organization says to kids, 'your home language, your family is important.'" Step into a classroom at the Denise Louie Education Center to see how their unique program helps kids get a great start in school and learn how SVP fits in.

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Photo by Lisa Merrill

The Advocate: 2013 Superheroes for Washington Families

What motivates a person toward selfless action? In their quest for answers, ParentMap found several outstanding individuals who have made a significant change in the lives of families and children residing in Washington State - and three of them are SVP Partners! In Part I of this series, meet the Advocate: Janice Deguchi, Executive Director of the Denise Louie Education Center. Read More »

Photo by Lisa Merrill

MWF Looking for MVO

With most volunteer opportunities, you go in, do your thing, and leave. Although you help the organization in some small, or even big, way, you don’t create any real connections. And those connections – an “MVO” (Meaningful Volunteer Opportunity) – are what I was looking for when I decided to become a Lead Partner for Denise Louie Education Center (DLEC).

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Photo by Lisa Merrill

Why It Matters: Meet 9-Month Old Alan

Alan is sitting with his mom, ready for our first visit. He’s 9 months old. As the hour passes, I notice that there’s none of the usual shuffling or wanting to get up and play, like most children his age. He has challenges with his motor skills and I start to recognize a developmental delay.

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