Early Learning Washington County (ELWC) is a partnership between the United Way of the Columbia-Willamette and Washington County Health and Human services, serving in the capacity of co-conveners and backbone organizations, as well as parents and a great number of community partners representing business, culturally-specific, early childhood, health, human and social services and K-12 organizations.

Most often, it’s priority populations who miss out on vital early learning opportunities.

So, our mission is to develop and implement a coordinated, culturally responsive and effective early learning system in Washington County, that provides opportunities, services and support needed to ensure young children and their families are stable, healthy and prepared for educational and life success.


"Most often, it’s priority populations who miss out on vital early learning opportunities."

Our Strategic Goals:  

  • Services are aligned, coordinated and effective 
  • Families are healthy, stable and attached  
  • Children are ready for kindergarten and reading at grade level by 3rd grade

Early Learning Washington County (ELWC) applies an Equity Lens to its goals and strategies to ensure that early learning services and systems are culturally responsive, with a focus on reducing disparities and disproportionate risks for priority populations of children ages 0 through 6 and their families. 

Priority populations include: 

  • Children from families of color
  • Children with disabilities
  • Children who are English-language learners
  • Children from families with low incomes
  • Children experiencing housing instability or homelessness
  • Children from migrant farmworker, immigrant or refugee families
  • Children from LGBTQ families
  • Children who have experienced abuse, trauma or other adverse childhood experiences 

So what does our work look like? 

  • We distribute culturally-responsive literacy kits and STEM materials to thousands of kids each year. 
  • We help provide quality preschool slots to the kids who need them most
  • We’ve piloted programs that deliver library books to childcare centers. 
  • We help secure culturally-specific reading materials to local libraries
  • And so much more!


In addition to this commitment all of ELWC’s community partners have signed a Declaration of Cooperation that specifically cite this pledge to Equity.  

Early Learning Washington County Programs:  

  • S.P.A.C.E/ Program/Navigators 
    • Partnered with CAIRO, Navigators works closely with African students, parents, community partners and school stuff to engage students and families from the African youth and families in the Beaverton/Aloha area specializing on improving academic outcomes. 
  • Early Connections 
    • A free service for new parents hoping to seek ideas and ease concerns for a new baby. 
  • Early Literacy 
    • ELWC distributes over 7,000 early literacy kits to promote culturally specific ways of reading, talking, singing, playing and writing with young children provided in four different languages. 
  • Focus Child Care Network 
    • Partnering with Community Action Child Care Resource and Referral, CCR&R coordinates two child care coaching networks for home-based Latino providers to increase quality care and education for those that provide services in the 25 Highest Need Elementary School Catchment Areas in Washington County. 
  • Healthy Families
    • A nationally recognized program that promotes child well-being through parenting support and skill development, Healthy Families provides Family Advocates to work with families as soon as they know they're expecting.  
  • Kinder Campaign 
    • Our campaign is to ensure children get registered for kindergarten on time in Washington County in the English, Spanish, Mandarin, Vietnamese, Russion, Mixteco, Arabic, Somali, Chuukese, French, Swahili and Marshallese languages.
  • Kinder Readiness Partnership & Innovation 
    • In Washington County, all seven school districts (Banks, Beaverton, Forest Grove, Gaston, Hillsboro, Sherwood, and Tigard-Tualatin) run a wide variety of kindergarten readiness and transition programs. If you are interested in learning more about Kindergarten readiness & transition programming in your area please contact your school district or Evan Weaver (evan_weaver@co.washington.or.us) 503-846-4918
  • Preschool Promise 
    • The overall goal of Preschool Promise is to build a system that better prepares children from low-income families for Kindergarten. With a variety of settings and in various locations, we have held 296 preschool openings.
  • Prevention 
    • Washington County Children, Youth, and Families leverages state and federal funding to support community programs, such as parenting education, student assistance and prevention coalitions. Staff also coordinate the Washington County Youth Substance Use Prevention Collaborative.

The ELWC early learning kits focus on both literacy skills as well as STEM skills that are provided in multiple languages throughout the region.

ELWC partners include:

  • 211info
  • Adelante Mujeres
  • Banks School District
  • Beaverton School District
  • El Centro Cultural
  • Community Action
  • Domestic Violence Resource Center
  • FamilyCare Health Plans, Inc.
  • Forest Grove School District
  • Gaston School District
  • Health Share of Oregon
  • Hillsboro School District
  • Intel, Inc.’s Family Child Care Network
  • LifeWorks NW
  • Lutheran Community Services
  • Morrison Child and Family Services
  • Neighborhood Health Center
  • Nike, Inc. Child Development Programs
  • Northwest Regional Education Service District
  • Oregon Child Development Coalition
  • Oregon Department of Human Services
  • Oregon Food Bank
  • Sherwood School District
  • Tigard-Tualatin School District
  • Virginia Garcia Memorial Health Center
  • Washington County Cooperative Library Services
  • Youth Contact
  • Parents
  • Washington County Department of Health and Human Services (Children, Youth and Families, Mental Health and Public Health)