Sit back and relax into a deep dive of our
(it was a very long year...)
Child Care is
No Small Matter
Nearly 300 Peninsula residents participated in a panel discussion and virtual screening of the groundbreaking documentary, No Small Matter, an absorbing film about the power of early learning. Panelists included: Assemblymember Marc Berman, All Five Director Carol Thomsen, First 5 Deputy Director Michelle Blakely, and Build Up for San Mateo County Director Christine Padilla. They were joined by Rachel Giannini, a preschool educator featured in the film. The compelling backdrop provided by No Small Matter, coupled with the reality of current childcare challenges, fueled a lively discussion among the panelists (found in the video above) about early childhood education in California.

 CLICK HERE to read more.
Footsteps @ St. Andrew's
An investment in the community many years in the making, Footsteps Child Care opened the doors to their latest preschool program in early 2020. Partnering with St. Andrew's church to revitalize an underused classroom, this full-time preschool program is designed for working families and will help close the gap of more than 500 preschool spaces in the City of San Mateo.
(above) Representatives from St. Andrew’s and Footsteps Child Care Inc. receive commendations from San Mateo County Board of Supervisors, presented by Gina Quiney, representative for Supervisor Carole Groom. (top left) Outdoor Space at St. Andrew's, (bottom left) Reading Nook and Circle Time corner at St. Andrew's.
South San Francisco
On November 24, 2020, the city Council met to discuss the re-development of 840 W. Orange Avenue, the site of a former library. Council unanimously supported the idea to renovate the space into a preschool & care center.
A new equity commission task force favors free universal preschool.

Read more below
September 18, 2020
Redwood City
Looking to expand the number of child care facilities located in Redwood City, the Planning Commission voted to approve zoning amendments expanding where they can be located and permitting the development of large family child care homes by-right.

Read more below
December 10, 2020
Between August and September, nearly 1.1 million people left the labor force, meaning they are no longer working or looking for work. Of those workers, 865,000 of them were women, a number that is four times higher than the 216,000 men who also left the workforce, according to a National Women’s Law Center analysis.

San Mateo City Councilmember Amourence Lee (bottom right) and Redwood City Councilmember Giselle Hale (top right) have been vocal about these implications in the workforce of San Mateo County, particularly those in the early care and education sector who are disproportionately women and BIPOC.
Learn more about their work below:

When the COVID-19 pandemic arrived in our neighborhoods, local and resourceful leaders in the Early Care and Education community in San Mateo County began working around the clock to secure access and equitable distribution of emergency funds, critical PPE supplies, and much needed technical assistance for providers engaged in navigating the constantly changing restrictions and regulations for providing safe child care during a public health crisis.

A sample of our work is found below:
Build Up OP-ED: Re-imagining Child Care in San Mateo County
During this trying and difficult time, the child care industry has risen to help navigate this public health crisis by providing a safe space for our front-line workers to leave their children. Child care is, and always has been essential, and it will play a critical role as a foundation for future recovery.
To read the full article
San Mateo County Grants Provide Struggling Businesses With Hope
Early on in the pandemic fear and uncertainty drove many parents to pull their children from the programs and for some, working from home allowed them to care for their children instead. In addition, the state released guidelines reducing the number of children many centers and child care homes could have in their care. Makinya Ward, CEO at Kids Konnect said although she is operating below permitted capacity, “the sense of community is really strong and I’m very fortunate to have centers in San Mateo County. The families, the cities, everyone has just been so aware of what’s going on and doing their best to help.”
To read the full article
On July 21, 2020, the San Mateo County Board of Supervisors solidified their dedication to meeting the needs of our community's most essential workforce with their commitment to the Child Care Relief Fund. Read our press releases below to learn more about the scope of work and partners involved.

To view the Child Care Relief Fund presentation CLICK HERE.
Build Up Family Child Care Expansion Grants
In July 2020, awardees from the first-ever Build Up SMC Family Child Care Expansion Grant Program began receiving their $5,000 checks. With the generous support of Gilead, a local bio-medical research company, Build Up awarded 10 family child care providers with a mini-grant to support the expansion of their program from a small to large license. Funding to these programs has been critical in supporting our essential caregivers to make necessary adjustments to create safe environments in their home. We are currently working with our grantees to gather their individual stories of how the grant funding impacted their professional and personal goals, as well as those in their family and the communities they serve.

Funding Community Solutions
GILEAD led the way as Build Up's first corporate sponsor when they dedicated funding to inaugurate our Family Child Care Expansion Grants.

As a leader in meeting community needs, GILEAD also presented Build Up with the opportunity to apply for small business funding to support the development of Build Up's next round of goals.

Click Here to read our Press Release.
Commitment to Excellence
Since early 2019, Build Up has met with Greystar to discuss the community benefits generated by local high quality child care.

In November 2020, Greystar pledged an unprecedented array of commitments to developing spaces for the child care community that pave the way for a new standard of excellence!
Facility Development in California

Our partner in a state-wide effort to bring more high-quality ECE facilities to the communities of highest need in California responded to the Master Plan with an Issue Brief found below.

For decades, the Child Care industry has fought tirelessly to nurture our nation's future, California recognizes these efforts and commits to increasing quality with their Master Plan found below.
Build Up Planning Committee Members
All the achievements accomplished this year by Build Up have been made through a collective effort of leadership and support from our valued partners in the Early Care and Education community. We would like to recognize our Planning Team Members for their remarkable dedication and work in supporting our efforts.
Kristen Anderson  — Child Care Consultant
Michelle Blakely  — First 5 San Mateo County
Pamela Campos Build Up Technical Assistance Coordinator
David Fleishman  — Child Care Coordinating Council of SMC
Heather Hopkins  — Community Equity Collaborative
Sarah Kinahan  — Child Care Partnership Council
Christine Padilla Build Up Director
Alyson Suzuki  — San Mateo County Office of Education
Gina Quiney  — Office of Supervisor Carole Groom
Randy Torrijos  — Office of Supervisor Dave Pine
Christine Thorsteinson Silicon Valley Community Foundation
And a Special THANKS to our incredible
Advisory Body Members and dedicated Chairs
Dave Pine Build Up Co Chair & San Mateo County Board of Supervisors, District 1
Kitty Lopez  — Build Up Co Chair & First 5 San Mateo County Executive Director
Kevin Mullin  — Build Up Honorary Chair & Assemblymember, District 22
As always, we hope you and your loved ones are safe and well.

Thank you for your continued support,

The Build Up Team