UnidosUS Awarded $150,000 from Pritzker Family Foundation to Support Latino Infant Initiative

Grant will further organization’s efforts to promote early learning and development among the youngest Latino children

WASHINGTON, DC—UnidosUS (formerly the National Council of La Raza), the nation’s largest Latino civil rights and advocacy organization, today announced it is receiving $150,000 from the Pritzker Family Foundation to launch a Latino Infant Initiative for children up to three years old. The grant will deepen UnidosUS’s engagement in Latino early learning through focused research, including a literature review and additional information gathering from UnidosUS’s Affiliates. The Initiative will produce and disseminate an issue brief that identifies options for building increased capacity for Latino parents and families; programs serving Latino children and dual language learners and recommendations for local, state, and federal policymakers.

Early learning is crucial. A growing body of research demonstrates that children begin learning before birth and that the early learning experiences that occur during the prenatal period and first three years of a child’s life have a measurable impact on their skill development. Additional research, including a 2019 study from UnidosUS, has shown that early childhood education programs deserve increased investments to adequately compensate their workforce and to fully meet the needs of young children and their families.

The need for increased investments in and access to programs serving children under the age of three years, will be particularly critical for Latino children, a rapidly growing group projected to account for half of public-school children by 2050.

“We are looking forward to our work with UnidosUS,” said Gerry Cobb, Director of the Foundation’s Pritzker Children’s Initiative. “We share a commitment to building comprehensive services and supports to families with infants and toddlers that reflect their diverse culture and needs. UnidosUS’s national network of leaders will make great partners in our common pursuit of a better system of care in communities across the nation.”

“We are grateful to the Pritzker Foundation for their generous support,” said Peggy McLeod, Vice President of Education, Workforce Development, and Evaluation, UnidosUS. “This grant will provide invaluable resources for us to expand our Latino childhood development research, address the barriers facing Latinos’ access to early care and education, and identify ways to scale up programs and resources that promote the healthy development and long-term achievement of Latino children.”