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Workforce Development: A Critical Piece of the Puzzle

Posted by Social Venture Partners Portland
SVP Portland invests in the Threads of Justice Collective

SVP Portland invests in the Threads of Justice Collective. 

It is well-acknowledged in the early learning field that preschool-aged children are socially and developmentally influenced by their sphere of adult care providers. These providers, like all humans, are prone to unconscious biases that can deeply impact the development and well-being of the children in their care, both positively and negatively. (To learn more about this issue, check out the Children’s Institute’s Early Link Podcast’s interview with Dr. Walter Gilliam.

Enter the Threads of Justice Collective (ToJC). ToJC is an organization of peers with early childhood pedagogical expertise in anti-bias training—one of the only anti-bias organizations in the region geared specifically to serve early childhood educators. 

With funding on the horizon from both the Student Success Act at the State level the Preschool for All initiative with Multnomah County, now is the time to build ToJC’s capacity to meet the growing workforce development needs. ToJC’s programs are vital to building a robust, skilled early learning workforce. Their unique approach and expertise will have an important role to play in the development of the early learning landscape—if they are well-positioned to meet the demand. 

Having established a model for anti-bias program delivery and trainer development, ToJC was looking to build their capacity to provide more of these services. Recognizing ToJC’s potential to impact the community, our Portfolio Management Team approved an initial investment of skilled volunteer expertise and connections with peer Community Partners to work alongside ToJC’s to foster their growth over the next nine months. With Lead Partner Bala Cadambi in place and a team identified, we have already launched the initial planning stages of this partnership! 

Equally important for SVP Portland is the possibility to advance our racial equity work. A deep partnership with ToJC brings with it the opportunity to learn about biases in early learning from an organization that specializes in disrupting the cycle of discrimination. 

This workforce development for early learning providers is a crucial piece of the puzzle to ensure access to quality, culturally relevant early learning experiences for preschool age children in our community. 

We are excited to bring ToJC’s leaders into our portfolio of exceptional Community Partners, and looking forward to launching our capacity building partnership!! 

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