Pathwaves WA builds the collective power of leaders of color to transform early childhood systems so that every child and their community thrives.
Creating pathways today for the children of tomorrow
We know that the experiences that young children go through today will have a great impact on the adults they will become. Unfortunately, early childhood systems in Washington and throughout the country continue to be inequitable, with Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC) children facing poorer outcomes due to a history of systemic and structural racism.
Our early childhood systems must be redesigned to eliminate racial disparities
The needs and voices of BIPOC communities—those who are most impacted by systemic injustices—are currently grossly underrepresented in positions of power within policy development processes.
Yet, to transform early childhood systems, we need these voices from leaders of color, particularly those from communities who are furthest from justice. We need them in decision-making roles to drive and shape the design of the very policies that affect generations and generations of our kids and our communities.
There is already so much knowledge and expertise in BIPOC communities.
Our mission at Pathwaves WA is to create the pathways for increased BIPOC representation to manifest the community-centered changes to make early childhood policies just!
BIPOC leaders are uniquely qualified
BIPOC leaders hold the knowledge, expertise, and transformative power to make necessary community-centered changes in early childhood policy.
Communities of color must steer
Communities who are most impacted by systemic injustices must be represented in positions of power within policy development processes and decision-making.
What we’re doing now needs to be part of a larger body of work
Not only must we increase BIPOC leaders in the early childhood policy field, we must also prioritize real, sustained progress in undoing structural racism and dismantling practices that uphold white supremacy in this sector.
White folks need to do their part
Transformational change requires white people to commit to and work toward undoing the persistent, ongoing systems of racism and addressing racism’s historical harmful impact on communities of color.
We hold space
We will prioritize the health and well-being of BIPOC leaders, creating a space for reflection, restoration, joy and belonging within the early childhood policy field.
We lead with trust
We will build trusting relationships to further shared work, collaboration, and better outcomes for children in Washington.
We center BIPOC voices
We will value the expertise and experiences of BIPOC leaders in this work with compensation for their time and energy, moving away from perpetual volunteer time from BIPOC leaders who are often asked to shoulder the greatest burdens.
We will lead with an intersectional lens
We will have sincere and authentic curiosity and willingness to learn about and honor the intersectionalities of identity in order to deepen and enrich our work, including race, gender, class, immigration, sexual orientation, ability, language, and experience. We will also recognize our respective privileges and use them to support those historically excluded from justice. We will move towards racial equity with intention, working in new ways which may be uncomfortable, taking risks, acknowledging inevitable mistakes and missteps, yet continuing to hold ourselves and others accountable to racial justice.
We are adaptive and nimble
In the course of seeking and creating the field’s tools for assessment, improved practice, and accountability for individual, organizational, and sector progress, we will also prioritize capacity for reflective learning and improvement in our program design and implementation, seeking feedback and ways to improve that are incorporated into an adaptive structure.