“When families are strong and children thrive, the community prospers.”
That’s the sentiment behind the 2019 Arizona Town Hall topic: Strong Families Thriving Children. Each year, the nonprofit organization focuses on engaging people across the state in community forums to learn about critical policy issues and develop solutions together.
“Arizonans realize that family and child well-being are public issues that impact everyone,” said Tara Jackson, Arizona Town Hall president. “Helping families and children be happy, healthy and resilient helps the larger community and the state.”
Relevance to early childhood supporters
This year’s topic is particularly relevant to early childhood supporters, since the first five years of a child’s life are so critical to later success in life. In addition, strengthening the family environment in which young children develop impacts their opportunity to have the positive, nurturing experiences they need to grow, learn and succeed.
In fact, the connection between the 2019 town hall topic and early childhood health and development is so strong that one of the first opportunities for discourse was at the 2019 First Things First Early Childhood Summit in August.
That town hall session — “Strong Families. Thriving Children. A Community Town Hall About Family and Child Well-Being,” kicked off a series of community town halls to be held in communities across Arizona from September through November.
Residents are encouraged to register for and attend town halls in their communities. Some of the community town halls do have registration fees to cover venue and other costs. The series culminates in the 112th statewide Town Hall in mid-November, which is by invitation-only.
First Things First is helping to sponsor community town halls in three communities — Pinal, Yuma and the La Paz/Mohave area. This partnership with Arizona Town Hall will help bring attention to the importance of considering the first five years when considering the overall topic of Strong Families Thriving Children.
In addition, First Things First served on a research committee which helped to develop a nearly 100-page background report on the topic. The report, which was prepared by the Morrison Institute for Public Policy in partnership with Arizona universities and the Arizona Town Hall Research Committee, covers a long list of topics related to building strong families and thriving children.
These include data about child well-being in the state, information about adverse childhood experiences, chapters on challenges faced by families and children such as violence and substance abuse as well as specific information on particular populations including children with disabilities, American Indians, rural Arizonans and refugee families. In addition, potential solutions are explored, including community resources, protective factors that increase family resiliency and how faith communities, nonprofits and governments can contribute.
A two-page summary of the report is also available. For more information and updates on planned community town halls this fall, visit the Arizona Town Hall website.
2019 Arizona Town Hall sessions
|Phoenix||First Things First Early Childhood Summit 2019
Arizona Town Hall Panel, Phoenix Convention Center
|August 26, 2019
|Prescott||Prescott Community Town Hall||September 6, 2019||Click here.|
|Tucson||Whetstone Unit Community Town Hall||September 11, 2019||Click here.|
|Tucson||Tucson Community Town Hall||September 13, 2019||Click here.|
|Phoenix||UMOM Community Town Hall||September 17, 2019||Click here.|
|Casa Grande||Casa Grande Community Town Hall||September 20, 2019||Click here.|
|Tucson||“Strong Families Thriving Children” Town Hall for Affected Populations||September 21, 2019||Click here.|
|Buckeye||Lewis Facility Community Town Hall||September 25, 2019||Click here.|
|Tucson||Future Leaders Town Hall||September 27, 2019||Click here.|
|Cave Creek||Cave Creek Community Town Hall||October 8, 2019||Click here.|
|Phoenix||Maryvale Community Town Hall||October 10, 2019||Click here.|
|Pinetop||White Mountains Community Town Hall||October 11, 2019||Click here.|
|Yuma||Future Leaders Town Hall||October 11, 2019||Coming soon.|
|Flagstaff||Flagstaff Community Town Hall||October 15, 2019||Click here.|
|Prescott||Yavapai College – Prescott Campus Future Leaders Town Hall||October 15, 2019||Coming soon.|
|Clarkdale||Yavapai College – Verde Valley Campus Future Leaders Town Hall||October 16, 2019||Coming soon.|
|Apache Junction||Apache Junction Community Town Hall||October 18, 2019||Coming soon.|
|Casa Grande||Future Leaders Town Hall||October 24, 2019||Coming soon.|
|Flagstaff||Future Leaders Town Hall||October 24, 2019||Coming soon.|
|Surprise||Future Leaders Town Hall||October 24, 2019||Coming soon.|
|Mohave County||Mohave County Community Town Hall||November 2, 2019||Coming soon.|
|Maricopa County||112th Statewide Town Hall (By invitation only)||November 14-16, 2019|