Engage Community

We’re all in this together.

There is tremendous potential in the power of early childhood education, potential for the child, the family, the educator and the entire community. At Friends Center, we build community participation and partnership to promote and advance high-quality early childhood education and its potential to transform lives and communities.

Traveling Library

Knowing the development importance of early exposure to words and books, Friends Center is bringing these benefits directly to the community with a special traveling library. Focused on children ages 0-5, the ‘Books with Friends’ trolley will travel on a weekly schedule to communities throughout New Haven to offer books and curriculum to family child care providers and center-based programs in under-resourced and overburdened neighborhoods. A full-time educator, Aundrea Tabbs- Smith, will be available to promote learning experiences for children and serve as a learning resource for childcare providers and parents.

New Haven Family Stroll and Festival

Each year, the New Haven Family Stroll and Festival brings hundreds of community members together in a fun-filled event with a mission: to raise awareness and funds to address the urgent need for high-quality early childhood education. Organized by Friends Center, in partnership with other early childhood education programs, the day begins with a scenic 1.5 mile bridge loop, followed by a festival full of activities, entertainment and resources, including: juggling, magic, hula hoops, zumba, ballet, bubbles, music, face-painting, food and dozens of tables providing information on valuable community services. Read more