Raising Illinois

Closing the opportunity gap for our youngest learners

The science is clear: the first three years of a child’s life are the most critical for healthy development. By investing early, we can lay the foundation for all Illinois children to have a strong start in school and life. But, to get it right, we must also address the root causes of historic disparities and create an equitable and cohesive early childhood development system for Illinois’ expecting families, infants and toddlers, and the communities in which they live. This is our chance to make a powerful commitment to our youngest generation. 

Newborn Baby looking at adult

75% of Illinois'

infants & toddlers

left without access

to child care

Only 1 in 4 Infants & Toddlers in Illinois Can Access Licensed Child Care

and only 5% have access to high-quality care. Barriers also exist in home visiting, early intervention and other critical services for children prenatal-to-age 3. Learn more about the Illinois Prenatal to Three Agenda.

Our Priorities

Creating the strongest foundation for success in school and life

Illinois infants and toddlers see the greatest disparities in funding to support them during their formative years. Our children are shortchanged exactly when the potential benefit is greatest. Our coalition of 100+ diverse stakeholders is working to ensure every Illinois family with children under age 3 has affordable and equitable access to high-quality learning experiences, health services and economic supports. This will create the strongest foundation for infants’ and toddlers’ success in school and life. 

600x600 Baby Playing

News & Resources

Raising Illinois Racial Equity Toolkit

09 November 2022
Posted in

Raising Illinois Racial Equity Toolkit Resources built by Erikson Institute to use in your anti-racism practice. “Anti-Racism” is the actions and practices used to challenge and transform beliefs, ideas, behaviors, policies, institutions, and systems that support…

FY 24 Funding For Early Childhood

25 October 2022
Posted in ,

Raising Illinois calls for a 20% across the board increase in state funding for early childhood programs

Parents holding newborn baby

Family Leaders Reflect on the National PN-3 System Building Meeting

21 October 2022
Posted in

Family Leaders Reflect on the National PN-3 System Building Meeting When Lettie Hicks first received the news that she was going to Baltimore for the National PN-3 System Building Meeting, organized by the Prenatal-to-Three Capacity Building…

Raising Illinois is a collective effort to close the opportunity gap. Learn more.

Are you ready? Learn how you can get involved.