It Takes a Village

16 Jun, 23

Every family deserves a path to prosperity, yet too many families struggle to get by without a path to get ahead. This is especially true for families with young children in need of care but are facing extremely high costs and lacking access to affordable, high-quality childcare options due to the State of Texas’ failure to fund early childhood education. In Harris County, we will not sit idly by while working families struggle, and our youngest residents lack access to additional opportunities.

We have a responsibility to act, and the need is great. In Harris County, there are 105,000 children in need of care competing for about 9,400 high-quality childcare slots. No working family should have to choose between childcare, rent, or putting food on the table.

This week, we took action to meet this growing need.  Early REACH (Raising Educational Access for Children in Harris County) will help low-income parents of up to 800 infants and toddlers access the high-quality care they desperately need.

This new program will relieve the burden of costs and improve quality in high-need areas by paying childcare workers while supporting professional development and staff retention. Early REACH targets families that make less than 85 percent of the state median income, which means roughly $75,000 annually for a family of four.  To learn more about Early REACH or apply, visit

Early REACH is just one part of our broader commitment to advancing economic opportunity for all. In Harris County, we are creating Paths to Good Jobs and Fair Opportunity by:

  • Leading the fight for good-paying jobs and worker protections;
  • Building career pipelines through job training and labor apprenticeship programs;
  • Leveling the playing field with fair and inclusive local economic policies that benefit communities, businesses owned by women and people of color, and small businesses and entrepreneurs.

We are ensuring families Have Basic Building Blocks to Thrive by:

  • Increasing access to safe, stable, and affordable housing;
  • Supporting families with resources to help meet basic needs;
  • Expanding access to childcare, early education, and youth enrichment programs.

I’m so proud of the work we are doing to give every family a shot at the American Dream, despite the efforts of leaders in the State of Texas tying our hands and trying to stop us from doing this important work. Know that we will continue fighting to deliver economic opportunity for all.

Best regards,

Rodney Ellis