Colorado Early Childhood
Advancing Systems of Care
The Colorado Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems: Health Integration Prenatal-to-three Project (CO-ECCS) is advancing the infrastructure, capacity, equity and sustainability of Colorado’s maternal and child health and early childhood systems of care to achieve the vision that “all children are valued, healthy and thriving and have equal access to services, supports and resources.”
The project’s five year plan is being implemented by Illuminate Colorado.
About the Project
Ensuring Successful Implementation
Illuminate Colorado is working collaboratively with key partners and agencies responsible for the delivery and coordination of prenatal-to-three (P-3) services to ensure the successful implementation of the CO-ECCS goals and activities.
Background About Funding
The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), an agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, awarded approximately $5.1 million through 20 cooperative agreements to states and non-profit organizations to support the Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems Health Integration Prenatal-to-Three (ECCS) Program.
These funds will advance cross-sector collaborations and partnerships, health system improvements, state-level policy and fiscal innovation, equity, and family leadership to promote early developmental health and family well-being among prenatal to three-year-old (P-3) populations.
Colorado is among the 20 grantees awarded funds through HRSA’s ECCS Program to build state capacity and infrastructure to integrate and strengthen maternal and child health and early childhood systems.
Its particular focus on the prenatal-to-three development period maximizes the opportunity to reach and support families during the earliest stages of parenting. The grant, awarded to the Colorado Department of Early Childhood provides $255,600 annually for five years (2021-2026) to complete activities that will advance Colorado’s maternal and child health and early childhood systems of care and help Colorado achieve the vision that “All children are valued, healthy and thriving and have equal access to services, supports and resources.”
Guiding the Work In Colorado
To guide the implementation of CO-ECCS, the Early Childhood Leadership Commission (ECLC), Colorado’s federally-authorized state advisory council for early childhood, approved the formation of the Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems (ECCS) Working Group on December 16, 2021 and subject to annual review and reauthorization.
Learn more about the ECCS Working Group.
Meetings & Events
Meetings of the ECCS Working group are scheduled for the fourth Tuesday of the month from 10:30 am to 12:00 pm MST. Three Implementation Teams, tasked with the work of the three goals of the project, meet as breakout groups during the scheduled ECCS Working Group meetings. The Implementation Teams are:
- Coordinated Intake and Referral Systems
- Early Childhood and Health Care Partnerships
- Equity Planning
If you are interested in signing up to work for an implementation team sign up HERE.
Click HERE to view the entire ECCS Calendar. Use the ‘Category’ button to select ‘Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems Grant’ and view all upcoming ECCS events.
Over the past decade, hundreds of partners and more than 5,000 families have informed the advancement of Colorado’s early childhood and maternal child health systems.
The [Colorado Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems: Health Integration Prenatal-to-three Program] will build upon Colorado’s foundation to implement innovative and creative approaches that cut across federal, state, and local systems and services, which will result in an equitable and comprehensive P-3 system.
The project will also strengthen the state infrastructure and capacity to serve children and families P-3 by integrating and aligning health services so that families are able to receive a full continuum of support during the most critical times in their child’s life.
Project Goals & Strategies
Collaborating partners are focused on achieving three goals over the course of five years.
The CO-ECCS Project advances specific goals and objectives within the preexisting statewide early childhood plan, Colorado Shines Brighter Birth-through-Five Strategic Plan 2020-2025 (CSB B-5 SP). Click here for more on the Colorado Shines Brighter Birth-through-Five Strategic Plan.
GOAL 1: Increase Engagement in P-3 System of Care
Increase the engagement of new stakeholders, such as families and health providers in the system of wrap-around supports for families during pregnancy through the first three years of a child’s life.
Integrated Coordinated Intake and Referral Systems
Identify and assess barriers across local and state referral systems, create resources to support community cross-sector integration, and develop recommendations for future improvements to prenatal-to-three referral systems (CSB B-5 SP Strategy 1.2.8).
Family Voice in Integrated Systems
Ensure structures are in place to receive and incorporate family voices across early childhood and maternal child health policy and initiative planning, implementation, and continuous quality improvement processes(CSB B-5 SP Strategy 3.3.3).
GOAL 2: Align Early Childhood and Maternal Child Health Systems
Align early childhood and maternal child health systems to advance the sustainability of multi-generational preventive services and systems.
Identify and prioritize policy and financing recommendations that support an integrated prenatal-to-three system and mobilize partners to advance those recommendations (CSB B-5 SP Strategy 1.3.3).
Sustainable Integrated Programming
Develop resources to increase connections between early childhood and maternal child health systems through cross-sector planning, braiding and blending funds, and sustainable implementation strategies (CSB B-5 SP Strategy 4.1.9).
GOAL 3: Advance Health Equity
Advance health equity by creating an Early Childhood Health Equity Action Plan focused from the prenatal period through the first three years of a child’s life.
Prenatal-to-Three Early Childhood Equity Action Plan
Develop an Early Childhood Equity Action Plan that advances equity for prenatal-to-three that is a collaboration of the early childhood and maternal child health systems (CSB B-5 SP Strategy 1.1.7).
CO-ECCS Working Group
The Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems Working Group was approved by the ECLC in 2021 to guide the implementation of the Colorado Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems: Health Integration Prenatal-to-three Project (CO-ECCS).
ECCS Working Group Charter
The Working Group is charged as an advisory group for the ECCS Grant. The Working Group will engage stakeholders in the system of wrap-around supports for families during pregnancy through the first three years of a child’s life to ensure alignment of Colorado’s early childhood and maternal child health systems. In order to advance health equity of P-3 services, the Working Group will collect information and examine data from diverse partners to inform a P-3 Early Childhood Equity Action Plan.
Download the complete ECCS Working Group Charter
ECCS Working Group Voting Member List
CO-ECCS Working Group members include families and healthcare providers, as well as advocates, organizations, and agencies in both the maternal and child health and early childhood systems.
The ECCS Working Group meets on the fourth Tuesday of the month from 10:30 am to 12:00 pm MST. Be sure to join the ECCS mailing list to receive calendar invitations.
Links to join these meetings can also be found on the ECCS Working Group webpage and the event calendar. Use the ‘Category’ button to select ‘Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems Grant’ and view all upcoming ECCS events. Meeting agendas will be posted as they become available. Other materials are available in the ECCS Working Group Shared Drive.
Goal Implementation Teams
Three implementation teams are tasked with completing activities to reach the goals of the CO-ECCS Project. Each implementation team meets in breakout sessions during regularly scheduled ECCS Working group meetings.
Coordinated Intake & Referral Systems
Early Childhood & Health Care Partnerships
Download the full CO-ECCS Strategic Plan
Download the family recruitment flyer
Download the general overview flyer
Download the health professional recruitment flyer