A Caregiver’s Face is ‘Essential’

DONATE SO A CHILD CAN SEE A SMILE

For an infant, a face can speak a thousand words.

Research shows that babies learn about other people, the world, and themselves all through watching their caregivers’ faces.

As we change our daily life to accommodate a “new normal” due to COVID-19, child care providers
are facing unexpected hurdles in their care of infants.

While cloth face mask mandates are crucial to the safety of the children we serve, child care providers are discovering infants and young children are missing the personal connection a face can give. Many babies and young children require visual input from
faces in their caregiving interactions to develop healthy brain connections, and strong social and emotional development.

Early Learning Association (ELC) has partnered with Florida Association of Infant Mental Health (FAIMH)
to provide child care providers with clear face masks. Clear face masks allow child care providers to follow
quality safety precautions without losing personal interaction.

ELC has purchased 2,500 clear masks through FAIMH’s “Faces are Essential” campaign. Our goal is to purchase
10,000 clear face masks for every licensed child care provider, infant, toddler, teacher and caregiver.

We need your help to make this happen!
A single clear mask costs $3, so a small donation of $10, $20 or $50 can help us acheive our goal.

Donate, below, to join Pinellas County’s “Faces are Essential” movement to help a child see their caregiver’s face again. Donations will also be accepted through the Pinellas Community Foundation. ELC staff will ensure the distribution and purchase of the face masks to providers.

Please contact  Wonetha Hall at (727) 400-4430 or email whall@elcpinellas.org with questions or to partner!