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While the election is still being pondered by political pundits, real life goes on... including the struggle of real life parents to get affordable access to quality early care and education for their kids so they can get to work.  But that struggle may get a lot tougher.

In the next few weeks, Congress will be debating investments in early care and education (child care, preschool, HeadStart, etc.).  During this debate, Congress will mainly be fighting over statistics--but our kids are more than numbers, and Congress needs more than statistics in order to get a real understanding of parenthood in America.

With child care hanging in the balance right now, it’s more important than ever to bring the voices and experiences of parents (like you!) to the halls of Congress.

*Tell us all about it: Good, bad, funny, or sad experiences with finding, paying for, or getting great child care. We want to hear it all!

Click here to share your experience with us:

*Almost every parent has had a memorable experience with child care, preschool, or early learning at some point in their lives: The frantic search for affordable care, long waiting lists, or fabulous teachers that inspired your children. Your experiences are important and powerful. Click the above link and tell us all about it.

Sharing these personal experiences of parents makes a huge difference when we're talking to legislators (of any stripe). In fact, your experiences are our strongest legislative tool.

The combined voices of parents from across the country have been proven to be more powerful than any pin-stripe-suited lobbyist.

We're compiling all of your feedback into a book of MomsRising member experiences that we'll give to members of Congress. We'll personally present this book to your legislators as we educate them about the need for quality, affordable early learning and child care opportunities for all children.

You see, you are not alone. Nearly 12 million children under age 5 regularly spend time in childcare arrangements, but it's a patchwork system with variable standards and finding quality care is tricky and expensive.
Yet, quality preschool and early learning programs are crucial--- and more than 85% of a child's core brain structure is formed by age 5.

Sharing your experiences finding or affording child care will help make these statistics real to lawmakers—and could lead to great policy. And, after all, great early care and education policy isn’t just great for families, it’s great for our country’s economy.  In fact, every dollar invested in quality early care and education saves taxpayers considerable dollars in future costs.

I'm sure your friends and family have had some interesting experiences too, so pass this link along by forwarding this email far and wide to friends and family now. Every voice makes us stronger!

Here's that link again so you can share your experiences:

Together we are a powerful voice for families!

P.S. Thanks to our friends at the National Women's Law Center for all of the hard work they do on this issue.

[1] U.S. Congressional Committee on Education and Labor, July 2009 PDF:

[2] Child and Family Policy Center and Voices for America's Children, 2004

[3] "Early Childhood Education for All A Wise Investment," MIT Workplace Center PDF:

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