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Welcome to 
First Impressions of Routt County

Routt County’s Early Childhood Council

We are a dynamic organization dedicated to promoting the well-being and development of children during their crucial early years. Founded on the principle that every child deserves a strong start in life, we strive to provide support, resources, and advocacy for families, educators, and service providers.

About Us

We engage in a variety of activities to support our mission. From advocating for policies that benefit young children to providing professional development opportunities for early childhood educators, we are committed to creating a nurturing and supportive environment for children to learn, grow, and thrive.

History

Routt County’s Early Childhood Council and the program, First Impressions of Routt County, was formed in March 1997 after extensive community forums and needs assessments.

Mission

First Impressions of Routt County works to ensure that young children and educators will be provided adequate resources and quality programs to promote healthy development and school readiness.

Vision

The First Impressions Council strengthens the community’s collaborative web of resources where children, families and educators experience dignity and a sense of belonging.

Our Values

Engage

Actively informing and involving the community, stakeholders, and partners in the mission and initiatives of First Impressions.

Advance

Striving for progress and improvement in the field of early childhood development.

Access

Promoting inclusivity and equitable access to resources and services.

Early Childhood Community Plan

First Impressions is focused on the following top priority areas as identified by completing a grassroots review of strengths and opportunities throughout our communities in creating the Routt County Early Childhood Community Plan.

Increase Infant and Toddler Slots

To identify the barriers to the addition of new childcare slots or creation of new facilities and determine the ways in which those barriers might be mitigated while promoting family-friendly workplace policies and employee childcare options in the community.

Recruiting and Retaining a High-Quality Early Childhood Workforce

To encourage ECE as a viable and valuable career option, and increase compensation/benefits for early childhood workers and in the community.

Increase Access to Specialized Services

The Children’s Health Advocacy Team (CHAT) works to improve access to specialized physical and emotional health providers and services for children ages Birth to 8.

Thank You To Our Funders

Colorado Department of Early Childhood

Colorado Office of Early Childhood, Department of Human Services

Buell Foundation

Craig-Scheckman Family Foundation

Yampa Valley Community Foundation

Routt County Colorado

Routt County United Way

Routt County HRC

 Routt County Child Care Needs Assessment Report

To identify a plan to address gaps in the system, the Craig-Scheckman Family Foundation (CSFF) and First Impressions of Routt County commissioned this needs assessment in October 2022 to clearly understand the state of early care and education (ECE) in the county.

Between October 2022 and July 2023, researchers from the Butler Institute for
Families at the University of Denver (Butler) collected data to understand the
supply of and demand for ECE services of children birth through age 8 in
Routt County. The needs assessment used secondary data, interviews and
focus groups, and surveys to collect data from ECE providers, families, and

Check out the full report by clicking here!

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Early Childhood Career Pathways in Colorado

ECCLA’s Early Childhood Career Pathway Tool! This resource is designed to support individuals seeking careers in Colorado’s Early Childhood Profession. Whether you are just beginning your journey or advancing in the profession, this tool will provide you with valuable information, resources, and guidance to help you navigate career pathways. 

Interested? Click here to Lear more about ECCLA'S career pathway!

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