Welcome!

DC Action for Children is a nonprofit, nonpartisan child and youth advocacy organization dedicated to using research, data, and a lens toward race equity to break down barriers that stand in the way of all kids reaching their full potential.

DC Action is the home of DC KIDS COUNT, the primary source for data on conditions and outcomes for kids’ well-being. DC Action's collaborative advocacy campaigns empower young people and all residents to raise their voices to create change.


What's New?


Why is Finding Quality Early Care and Education so Challenging for so many Families with Young Children?

Listening to the excellent NPR series on child care has brought the struggle that many DC parents face to manage the steep cost of child care to the forefront of my mind. A new poll from NPR, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health found that nearly one-third of parents paying for early care...

November Newsletter: Our Road Ahead

A Note from the Executive Director: Now that the results of the 2016 presidential election are in, it’s clear that the work of DC Action for Children will be even more important as the nation moves forward in new and uncharted territory. Positive outcomes for DC children and their families are dependent on our continued commitment to improving their lives...

Refreshing a Home Visiting Council in DC: Some Initial Lessons Learned

The DC Home Visiting (HV) Council recently held its first retreat, meant to refresh and restart the HV Council. Think of this retreat as a concentrated strategic planning day led by a national advocate for applying home visiting as a family support strategy, Jason Sabo of Frontera Strategies. Jason gave members of the HV Council perspective on how our work...

BUILDing Support Structures for Children and Families in DC

Over the last several weeks, NPR has been publishing a series of pieces related to child care, spotlighting topics such as provider compensation and the cost of quality programs. In one of their featured articles, NPR spoke with Susan Hibbard, director of the BUILD Initiative. Whether you knew it or not, DC (along with 9 other states) is a member...

Disaggregating Data by Race: Context Matters

Last week I had the opportunity to attend the Annie E. Casey Foundation’s conference for KIDS COUNT grantees on Race Equity and Inclusion in San Antonio, Texas. As inspiring as it was challenging, the conference exposed me to diverse perspectives and experiences of thought leaders, organizers and advocates from across the country. It is by no accident that I labeled...

DC Action's Testimony at the Public Roundtable on the School Health Services Program

Yesterday we submitted written testifimony to the Committee on Education for the public roundtable on the new school health services program. We higlighted our analysis on the current school health services asking the critical question: Is the current school health services meeting the health needs of the students? You may find our full remarks below. Testimony of HyeSook Chung, Executive...

A Spotlight on Hispanic Children in DC

October is Hispanic Heritage Month! In the District of Columbia, Hispanic children represent 15 percent of the under 18 population. Moreover, there are over 7,000 Hispanic/Latino children under age 5 in DC. In 2014, we released a policy brief entitled Giving Hispanic Students a Chance to Succeed from the Start, that explored how race and ethnicity intersect with early learning...

ACS 2015 Reflection: It’s the RIGHT Time to Focus on Children

Glancing through last week’s release of the 2015 American Community Survey (ACS) estimates, it’s not unreasonable to believe that DC is improving. These assumptions may have developed as a result of the increase in median family income or the slight decline in child poverty over the last several years. I can’t blame anyone for being excited about these improvements as...

Focusing on the Future by Supporting Children in the Present

I have to admit that sitting behind a desk at DC Action for Children as an advocate for our youngest citizens is a bit unexpected for me. I had always imagined that I would become an investigator diving into the comorbid world of mental illness and drug addiction. After graduating with a BS in Psychology, continuing on to achieve a...

How Can the QIN Impact Quality in Early Care and Education?

I wrote about the launch of the Quality Improvement Network (QIN) in the spring of 2015. It is the District’s first step toward a multi-year effort to build neighborhood-based quality improvement systems for early care and education providers in the District. One year later, what have we learned? What makes the QIN innovative and worth continued investment in? Can it...

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We need you.

Despite a booming economy, the District has one of the highest child poverty rates in the country, with more than one quarter of children and youth living in families struggling to make ends meet. Let's work together to break down structural barriers that stand in the way of all kids reaching their full potential.  Join Us!