Our Family Connections Program supports parents from day one through college graduation day. By making childcare more affordable and consistent for low-income families, the program allows parents to enroll in college full-time, focus on their studies, graduate in a timely manner, and embark on a career that pays a living wage. At the same time, their children receive a quality, early-learning experience giving them a great start on their own educational journey.
A crisis in our region: lack of affordable childcare
- Washington state is one of the least affordable states for childcare. And, in Seattle, the cost of infant childcare hovers around $2,000 a month. 
- The annual income of a full-time, minimum wage earner is $31,200 a year in Seattle…for a low-wage, working parent the numbers just don’t add up. 
Workforce development for a booming city
- Seattle is the fastest-growing major city in the nation.  A single parent with two children must earn $70,000 just to provide basic needs for their family.
- Student parents in our Family Connections Program expect to increase their earnings by more than 300% after graduation.
- Approximately 70% of student parents in our program are working toward a degree in a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) field. 
A two-generational approach to lifting families out of poverty
- Higher education provides an opportunity to leave poverty behind. Single mothers with a bachelor’s degree earn 62% more ($18,500 more annually) than single mothers with a high school diploma. 
- And, over time, people with a college degree have increased earnings, have higher rates of employment, and improved outcomes for their children. [6,7,8,9]
- In addition, children who attend high-quality, pre-kindergarten programs can improve their school readiness. In Washington state, 70% of children who hover around the poverty line are not enrolled in a pre-kindergarten program. 
 Associated Press Sept 2018: “‘Broken’ economics for Seattle’s preschool workers, childcare sector”
 Minimum Wage Ordinance: http://www.seattle.gov
 U.S Census Bureau
 2018 Survey of current Family Connection Program parents.
 IWPR analysis of 2015 American Community Survey microdata (Integrated Public Use Microdata Series)
 Anthony Carnevale, Stephen J. Rose, and Ban Cheah. 2011. The College Payoff: Education, Occupations, Lifetime Earnings. Washington, DC: Georgetown University, Center on Education and the Workforce. https://cew.georgetown.edu/wpcontent/uploads/2014/11/collegepayoff-complete.pdf
 Michael Hout. 2012. “Social and Economic Returns to College Education in the United States.” Annual Review of Sociology 38 (1): 379–400.
 Dennis Vilorio. 2016. “Education Matters.” Career Outlook. https://www.bls.gov/careeroutlook/2016/data-on-display/education-matters.htm
 Paul Attewell, and David Lavin. 2007. Passing the Torch: Does Higher Education for the Disadvantaged Pay Off Across the Generations? New York, NY: Russell Sage Publishers
 KIDS COUNT Child Well-Being Index. http://datacenter.kidscount.org/publications. Data Source: Population Reference Bureau, analysis of data from the U.S. Census Bureau, 2005-09, 2010-14, 2011-15, and 2012-16 five-year American Community Survey.