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Hello Advocate,

During the state budget deliberations last year, our partners at groundWork worked with us to recruit Crystal Young to tell her story. We wanted to share her story with you today.

Watch Crystal tell her story on YouTube.

Crystal Young is a single mother of three, Mylan, My’leah, and Miracle. Miracle was born six weeks premature and spent two weeks in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. The Help Me Grow program provided the support that Crystal needed to make sure Miracle would be healthy and strong; Miracle is now a healthy, happy nine-month-old. Crystal stated, "I am happy to report that all three of my children are right on track developmentally and physically. Help Me Grow has been really important to my family."

Advocates for Ohio's Future needs your help to collect more stories about early care & education. Will you share your story with OhioSPEAKS today?

The research proves that high-quality early education, health care, and social/emotional development services lay the groundwork for children to be more successful in school, more likely to graduate from college and have higher overall lifetime earnings. That's why making high-quality early care & education available to every family makes sense for Ohio. The research is strong, but we also need stories, like Crystal's, to illustrate the value of early care & education programs to lawmakers, the media and the public.

Will you take a moment to share your story -- as a consumer or provider -- today? Click here to write your story or upload a video.

Please forward this email to families and early care providers in your community to give them the opportunity to get involved and share their story.

To stay on our mailing list but opt out of communication for the OhioSPEAKS project, just click here.

Will Petrik, Outreach Director