Call for Proposals: 2024 Strengthening Colorado Families and Communities Conference

Call for Proposals: 2024 Strengthening Colorado Families and Communities Conference

The planning for the 2024 Strengthening Colorado Families and Communities Conference is well under way. This year, we will be in person in Keystone, CO, September 4-6, 2024, and we couldn’t be more excited! This year, our conference’s guiding theme is Connect. Empower. Thrive.

The conference is an important opportunity to highlight ways to build protective factors that prevent child maltreatment and bring together learners from diverse backgrounds and professions from across Colorado, including professionals with varied levels of content knowledge.

We need you!

We will have engaging keynote presenters, fun activities, and much more, but this conference wouldn’t be the same without you sharing your expertise, experiences, and lessons learned. We hope you will submit a proposal so we can have robust opportunities for learning at the conference.

We are currently seeking sessions that offer insight, tools, ideas, practical application, and enriching discussions to address the following areas:

    • Elevating Lived Experience
    • Family Support and Engagement
    • Getting to Equitable Practice
    • Innovation Space
    • Policy
    • Supporting Workforce Care
    • Working Together to Maximize Resources

    See full descriptions of all topic areas on the Strengthening Colorado Families and Communities Conference website.

    Hands-on or interactive presentations that emphasize knowledge-sharing, skills building, and practical application are encouraged. Your presentation should lead to thought-provoking discussions that are inclusive, respectful, and encourage attendees to apply what they have learned to see their role in strengthening families and communities in Colorado. All sessions will be 75 minutes in length.

    Submit your proposal for a breakout session by March 22, 2024. All full submissions will be reviewed by the conference planning committee, and you will be notified via email by May 24, 2024 if your proposal is accepted. Selected presenters will receive complimentary conference registration. 

    Questions?

    Email Shannon Day at sday@illuminatecolorado.org

    About the Conference

    The Strengthening Colorado Families and Communities Conference is a biennial event and is a joint collaboration across the family support continuum, from prevention and public health through restoration and child welfare. 

    Presented in Partnership By:

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    Become a Point of Light this Holiday Season by Joining Our Volunteer List

    Become a Point of Light this Holiday Season by Joining Our Volunteer List

    As we near the end of 2023, it can be difficult to think about adding something else to your plate–even good things. Holiday events, family gatherings, get-togethers with friends, company festivities and more crowd our calendars.

    We have good news–an easy way to become a Point of Light this holiday season is to join our list of volunteers, and you won’t have to add anything to your calendar during this often hectic time of the year. 

    A Point of Light is someone who actively supports our mission to strengthen families, communities, and organizations to prevent child maltreatment

    Why volunteer? Your gift of time and energy as an Illuminate volunteer makes an immediate and direct impact in our communities. 

    Here are some ways our volunteers helped us strengthen families in 2023:

    In April, we partnered with Colorado State University’s Kappa Delta Phi Epsilon chapter to pack 200 summer kits for families in our Circle of Parents program. The kits included items for kids–things like coloring books and sidewalk chalk–and for adults–things like affirmation cards and a journal. 

    More recently, a group of staff and volunteers got together to deep clean and sanitize Acorn, one of our Illuminating Child Care classrooms. The classrooms are renovated RVs that provide high quality, drop-in and on-site child care for parents and caregivers navigating complex life situations, like mental health concerns, substance use disorders, or employment challenges, as they seek to strengthen their families. 

    Deep cleaning and sanitizing our child care classrooms is one of the ways we can do our part to keep the families that depend on Illuminating Child Care healthy. That’s what this volunteer opportunity was all about–making sure kids have the safe and healthy environments they need to grow and thrive. 

    The easiest way to learn about our future volunteer opportunities is to join our volunteer list!

    We hope that you’ll join us as we continue to build brighter childhoods for all children across Colorado.

    Become a Point of Light

    Donate Money

    Your financial generosity provides access to vital resources, programs, and services right here in Colorado. No amount is too small to make an impact!

    Donate Items

    Your in-kind gift through our Amazon Wishlist provides exactly what our program staff need, when they need it, to support families and communities.

    Donate Time

    Your gift of time and energy as an Illuminate volunteer makes an immediate and direct impact in our communities.

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    Daylight Saving Time ended last week, and it’s a tough transition for many of us. The days are shorter, it seems like it’s dark all the time, and our pets (and children, and our own stomachs) are begging for food at all hours of the day. 

    The importance of light is obvious at this time of the year. For some people, a sun lamp is what’s needed to provide physical light when it’s dark out. For others, the holidays provide a much-needed source of emotional or relational light. The truth is, we all need light in order to thrive.

    Similarly, each one of us has a responsibility to be a point of light in the lives of the children in our communities. No matter where they live, children need high-quality experiences and loving relationships to support healthy development. Colorado prospers when our children thrive–and they need light in order to thrive.

    It takes all of us working together.

    If you ask us, one of the best ways to celebrate the holiday season is by becoming a Point of Light–someone who actively supports our mission to strengthen families, organizations, and communities to prevent child maltreatment. 

    Between now and December 31, our goal is to raise $25,000 for children and families in Colorado, and we can’t do it without you!

    It’s a win-win situation.

    Your monetary gift to us is 100% tax deductible and qualifies for the Child Care Contribution Tax Credit.

    Thanks to the Colorado Child Care Contribution Tax Credit, monetary donations made to Illuminate Colorado are eligible for a 50% tax credit. This means that when you donate, you can receive a substantial portion of your contribution back as a credit against your Colorado state income taxes.

    Now is the best time to give!

    Plus, when you make a monetary gift on our Points of Light webpage between now and December 5, you will become one of our Points of Light AND help us earn extra money from the $1+ Million Colorado Gives Day Incentive Fund. All participating Colorado Gives Day nonprofits earn a percentage of the fund, so the more we raise, the more we get!

    If now isn’t a good time for you to support us financially, that’s okay!

    There are other ways that you can be a Point of Light for children and families in Colorado, and we’ll be highlighting each of them on our blog in the weeks to come.

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    As we head into the end of the year, the days are getting shorter and the nights are getting longer. And, now that we’re safely post-Thanksgiving, many folks are putting up lights and holiday decorations.

    Holiday lights are a lovely metaphor for community. If only one house put up one single strand of lights, the night would still be exceptionally dark. But, when an entire street turns on their lights, we can feel the joy and closeness to each other. While each home may only constitute a single point of light, the collective effect of thousands of points of light is one of solidarity and hope.

    Introducing the 1000 Points of Light Campaign

    Between now and the end of the year, we are looking for 1,000 Points of Light for children and families in Colorado. Each Point of Light represents someone who financially supports our mission to strengthen families, communities and organizations to prevent child maltreatment. One hundred percent of funds raised will support effective programs that keep Colorado kids safe and strengthen families throughout the year.

    This year, we’re asking you to become a Point of Light by giving $10. $10 might not seem like much, but if 1,000 people give $10, we’ll raise $10,000 to build brighter childhoods in 2023–and that can make a big difference in the lives of kids and families. It takes all of us working together to build brighter childhoods in Colorado.

    Give $10, Get $5 Back

    Whenever you give to Illuminate Colorado, your donation is tax deductible AND qualifies for a 50% tax credit. That means, when you give $10, you get $5 back on your Colorado state taxes through the Child Care Contribution Tax Credit.

    Tax credit-eligible donations support programs like Illuminating Child Care, which provides safe, loving, and high quality care to infants and toddlers where parents are getting the support that they need to strengthen their families.

    To claim the credit, simply submit your copy of the completed Child Care Contribution Tax Credit Certification (Form DR 1317) with your tax return. We’ll provide you with the completed form once we process your donation.

    And that’s it! You’ll get $5 back (or more, depending on how much you give), and your gift will go to build brighter childhoods in 2023 and beyond.

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    Before any parent goes back to work, gets into treatment or tries to tackle any one of life’s challenges that may take them away from their child, they need to find child care. It’s a problem all parents can relate to, but solutions depend entirely on what access to child care looks like in your community. . . .

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    Amplify Your Donation

    If you live in Colorado, you might have already heard about Colorado Gives Day. On the first Tuesday of December since 2010, Coloradans have come together to support the nonprofits that make a difference in our lives. Colorado Gives Day has grown to be Colorado’s largest 24-hour giving event, raising more than $362 million for nonprofits across the state since it began.

    Colorado Gives Day is a powerful day of giving, but the support doesn’t stop with your donation. Thanks to the Community First Foundation, FirstBank, and other community partners from across the state, when you make a gift on our 1,000 Points of Light webpage between now and December 6, you will help us earn extra money from the $1.4 Million+ Incentive Fund. All participating Colorado Gives Day nonprofits earn a percentage of the fund, so the more we raise, the more we get!

    Prevention Through Partnership

    “Prevention happens in partnership” is a phrase often repeated by the Executive Director of Prevent Child Abuse America (PCAA), Dr. Melissa Merrick. As the Colorado chapter of PCAA these words rang especially true for us at Illuminate Colorado in 2021. As we began to emerge from the pandemic and find our new normal, only to experience resurgences and continued restrictions, the power of connection and innovation was continually underscored.

    Despite the ever-changing environment around us, 2021 brought more partnerships, opportunities and successes to Illuminate than ever before, and your partnership and financial contributions to our work helped make 2021 a year of significant growth.

    Since we are a nonprofit, we rely on your support to empower us to strengthen families, communities and organizations to prevent child maltreatment. Partner with us by becoming a Point of Light today.  

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