Announcement from AISJ Executive Director
Lenice C. Emanuel, MLA
Alabama Institute for Social Justice Awarded
$300,000 Grant from W.K. Kellogg Foundation

The Alabama Institute for Social Justice (AISJ), formerly known as the Federation of Child Care Centers of Alabama, Inc. (FOCAL), has developed a project plan to increase investment in early learning and preschool through aligning and building a base of childcare workers, center owners, parents, and teachers to educate the public on the need to improve support for childcare. The initiative, entitled Increasing Public Investment in Early Learning (IPIEL), is designed to galvanize community support to address barriers to high-quality, early learning.

The initiative was funded on November 6, 2017, by a $300,000 grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation of Battle Creek, Michigan.

“We are excited about this generous award from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation,” said Lenice Emanuel, executive director of AISJ. “It is a tremendous nod to the important work of arming communities with information and tools to create social change, particularly in the arena of early learning, a matter we view as critical to Alabama’s prosperity.”

The IPIEL initiative will focus on rural, community-based childcare providers, parents, and families. Using a continuous engagement model of leadership development and training, IPIEL seeks to empower women and people of color whose communities are marginalized due to unfunded mandates; a lack of livable-wage opportunities; and noncompetitive subsidies, which are heavily relied upon by childcare providers in rural Alabama. The goal of IPIEL is to strategically remove barriers that limit and undermine the economic well-being of women and people of color.