Great Start to Join in Star Power 2011

LAKE COUNTY — On Thursday, May 19, the Mason-Lake-Oceana Great Start Collaborative and Parent Coalition will gather with 54 other Great Start Collaboratives and Parent Coalitions from across the state. Over 3,500 people are expected to attend and share with state lawmakers how the state’s early childhood investment is critical to Michigan’s economic future. Parents, children, educators and community leaders will be among the local delegation heading to Lansing.

We invite you to attend this amazing event as part of our group. This is an exciting, fun-filled day with many family and kid friendly exhibits, participation in a parade from Cooley Law Stadium to the Capital, games, music, hands-on exhibits and more. We also will meet with our legislators to talk with them about the importance of funding family and early childhood programs.

More and more we hear about the positive economic effects of investing in early childhood. Investments in early childhood programs like prenatal care, preschool, quality child care and more are viewed by many researchers and economists as a key strategy in rebuilding the American economy. A 2009 study by the Wilder Foundation estimated Michigan’s cost savings and revenues due to past investments in school readiness at roughly $1.15 billion per year. The savings come from fewer people in the welfare, criminal justice and unemployment systems; the revenues come from better incomes and increased taxes.

It is very important for people from our tri-county area to attend in order to let our legislators know to make young children and families a priority when making their decisions. They also need to hear the wonderful, unique stories that only a parent or caregiver can share about their experiences with early childhood services. The energy and excitement is contagious and inspires one to make a difference.

Every registered participant receives a Star Power t-shirt, snacks, lunch, beverages and more. Lansing is a long drive and we have gas cards for those that drive. Carpooling is encouraged and we will help coordinate that as well.

Make your voice heard – join us for Star Power 2011. For more information and to register for the event, please visit www.greatstartforkids.org/star-power or contact Colleen Unsal, Parent Liaison, at (231) 233-6596.