When we support our youngest children in having the opportunity to fulfill their potential, we create the best outcomes in health, education and economic well-being for everyone in North Carolina.
Brains are built, not born. During the first years of life, children’s experiences are built into their bodies — shaping brain development and building the foundation for all future learning, behavior and health. Parents play the lead role in their child’s healthy development, but all parents are stretched in the earliest months and years of their child’s life. Our state and our communities all have a role to play in providing parents with support they may need at this especially critical time. Policies and programs should ensure healthy beginnings at birth, support families with young children and make high-quality child care and learning environments more accessible and affordable to all parents who want them. When we support them in their earliest years, we prepare young children to grow, learn and succeed—and our communities, workforce and economy become stronger and more productive.