ECFC Event

ECFC & San Diego Grantmakers Lunch & Site Visit – Mi Escuelita Therapeutic Preschool, October 18th

ECFC and San Diego Grantmakers invite you to participate in two upcoming events: a Grantmakers Learning & Networking Lunch and a Site Visit Program on October 18th.  

These events are timed to begin following the conclusion of the Grantmakers for Education annual conference program.  GFE attendees are welcome to attend the Learning and Networking Lunch on its own if travel plans do not allow for participation in the site visit program. 

As part of an initiative to explore how local, state, and national early childhood funder collaboratives can learn from and work with each other, ECFC is co-hosting a Learning and Networking lunch with local funders in San Diego.

Following the lunch, we will have the opportunity for a unique site visit to the Mi Escuelita Therapeutic Preschool in the Chula Vista School District of San Diego. Mi Escuelita is the only school of its kind in Southern California, designed especially for children ages 3-5 affected by domestic violence and abuse to help break the cycle of violence, help children and their families heal and begin the right path for school. 

Young children who have been exposed to violence and trauma experience a wide range of difficulties that affect their development, education and health (such as reduced verbal ability which can impede school readiness and academic outcomes in later grades).  

Mi Escuelita employs impactful strategies supporting children ages 3-5 and their families who have experienced violence and trauma: free all-day preschool with bilingual staff; full-time therapists in each classroom; senior volunteers in each classroom to provide intergenerational experiences; youth intervention and diversion programs for older siblings; wrap around services, counseling and crisis intervention for the whole family; and more.   A longitudinal study of Mi Escuelita children who were subsequently enrolled in the Chula Vista Elementary School District (CVESD) illustrated that across all years Mi Escuelita children performed equal to, and often better, than their peers on several different academic outcomes.  Learn more about the study outcomes.

Mi Escuelita is also a model for community-based public/private collaboration.  The preschool is operated by South Bay Community Services (SBCS), a community-based non-profit organization, on the campus of an elementary school within the Chula Vista Elementary School District.  It serves children referred by local law enforcement, Child Welfare Services, domestic violence programs, community-based organizations, and SBCS emergency shelter and transitional housing programs. The school is funded by First 5 San Diego, private donations, student sponsorships, and an annual fundraising gala.

Learning goals:

The Learning & Networking Lunch and Site Visit program will provide early childhood, education and health funders – as well as those interested in strengthening families in other ways–with an opportunity to:

  • Build relationships between local and national funders interested in the 
          intersections of early care and learning and long-term success for children
          and their families.
  • Explore the value of trauma informed care for young children and their
          families to put them on the right path for health, wellness and academic
  • Illustrate the intersections of early learning and care, education and other
          important outcomes for long term health and wellness for children and their


Thursday, October 18, 2018 
1:30pm – Grantmakers Networking Lunch
3:00pm – 5:00pm – Mi Escuelita Site Visit

Working Agenda:

1:30pm  – Grantmakers Learning & Networking Lunch

  • An opportunity for national funders in attendance to: network; learn about
          the San Diego context for early childhood and the site visit venue; and
          consider best practices and strategies for local and national funders to work

3:00pm    Mi Escuelita site visit

  • Guided small group experience to 3, 4 and 5-yr old classrooms, followed by
          presentation and discussion with Mi Escuelita staff: 
    Valerie Brew, Child Well
          Being Director
    Pam Wright, Clinical Director.

4:30pm    Funder take-aways and future learning opportunities

5:00pm    Adjourn


There is no registration fee for this event.  Attendees will be responsible for the cost of their lunch.


Register below to receive additional information on:

  • Lunch venue;
  • Directions and parking information for local attendees;
  • Transportation from the Grantmakers for Education conference hotel (for
          conference attendees staying on to participate in this site visit program).


This event is open to all foundations and other grantmaking entities (e.g. United Ways, public charities, First Fives), as well as staff, board, and volunteers of grantmaker affinity groups and regional associations of grantmakers.

GFE Conference Attendees: Should your travel plans prevent you from attending the Mi Escuelita site visit program, you are welcome to attend the Learning and Networking Lunch on its own. Registration is separate from GFE conference registration, please register for the Lunch and/or Site Visit program below. Please indicate your attendance at one or both of these events when you register. 



Download a printable PDF