Community System Initiatives in Illinois

Illinois is home to over 50 community collaborations focused on improving local early childhood systems. See the map of known community collaborations and email if there are any collaborations missing.

Illinois is investing in local systems building in targeted communities around the state through three initiatives.

All Our Kids (AOK) Networks are working in 13 Illinois communities to connect and coordinate services across sectors of the early childhood system, including health care, mental health services, early learning and care, family supports, and more. At the center of the initiative’s conceptual framework is a set of child and family health and well-being outcomes.

The Maternal and Infant Early Childhood Home Visiting (MIECHV) Program supports expanded and enhanced evidence-based home visiting programs in six Illinois communities. The initiative is also testing and refining systemic strategies for universal screening and coordinated intake as well as focusing efforts and resources on developing or supporting local early childhood collaborations. 

In 2014, Illinois was awarded a federal Preschool Development Grant, which enabled 18 communities to develop seamless “pipelines” of services across the early childhood years. 

Additionally, there are many local collaborations throughout Illinois that focus on improving outcomes for young children and their families.

Simplifying Complexity

Ecologist Eric Berlow doesn't feel overwhelmed when faced with complex systems. He knows that more information can lead to a better, simpler solution.