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Whole Child Community Equity

Whole Child Equity Partnership (WCEP)

A whole child approach envisions a society rooted in racial and economic justice where all children are embraced, valued and cared for; where every Black, Native American, Asian American, Pacific Islander and Latinx child and their family has access to systems and services that promote their health, well-being, and the life opportunities that enable them to thrive. The mission is to advance a collective Whole Child Equity agenda that seeks to improve the conditions under which children develop, learn, live and play, celebrate and value the strengths and attributes of their racial/cultural/linguistic identity, and support their sense of belonging.

To accomplish this, the WCEP is a coalition of community and statewide organizations, advocates, community organizers, direct service providers and issue area experts working across multiple sectors to advocate for holistic policies and programs that center the assets and needs of California’s Black, Native American, Asian American, Pacific Islander and Latinx children and their families facing the greatest systemic challenges. The WCEP’s evergreen goals are to:

  1. Advance strategies that promote healing and long-term asset building for children, families, and communities most impacted by institutionalized anti-Black racism 
  2. Move forward community-centered, culturally and linguistically affirming solutions in health, education and social systems
  3. Uplift community strengths and leadership to understand how to best meet the needs of children and families and allocate resources. 

Catalyst California co-chairs this partnership with The Children’s Partnership. Members include the following organizations: A Black Education Network, Black Californians United for ECE, California Child Care Resource and Referral Network, California for Justice, Center for District Innovation And Leadership, Community Coalition, Families in Schools, First 5 LA, First 5 Center for Children's Policy, InnerCity Struggle, and The Education Trust - West.  

Policy/Legislation Advocacy

In 2022, Governor Newsom signed into law, AB 2832, also known as the Whole Child Equity bill, which stands out in its bold approach to impact how our state allocates early care and education resources based on equity. The bill, sponsored by Catalyst California and championed in the legislature by Assemblymember Robert Rivas, stems from the vision and mission of the Whole Child Equity Partnership to reduce racial and economic disparities for historically underserved communities of color across California.

The Whole Child Community Equity Screening Tool will help our state understand how to distribute resources to the kids who need it the most. The bipartisan passage of AB 2832 charts a new path that places racial equity, economic justice and the needs of the whole child at the forefront. This bill creates a data-driven approach that will provide a clear picture of which communities have the greatest need and enables leaders to make informed decisions to target resources and policies where they would have the greatest impact. 

For more information on the bill, see overview of AB 2832.