Education

Educational First Steps surpasses $1M fundraising goal

Written by Mindia Whittier

Proceeds will help fund creation and support of high-quality early learning environments for young children.

Educational First Steps (EFS) reports exceeding its philanthropic target for an event in February.

The Diving Deep with Mark Cuban benefit was headlined by the Dallas Mavericks’ owner and ABC’s Shark Tank investor with a discussion on the intersection of entrepreneurship and education. It was hosted by co-chairs Wasan Alfalahi and Tiffany Cuban on February 22 at the Ritz-Carlton in Dallas. Donovan Lewis, Host for Sportsradio 1310 The Ticket, emceed and moderated the event.

For 30 years, EFS has created and supported high-quality early learning environments for children from birth to age five in North Texas.  EFS partners with small business owners and educators in over 100 childcare centers and 50 home-based partners in historically under-resourced communities to impact more than 8,000 children annually.

Event organizers said Cuban’s entrepreneurial experience, professional success, and value of education offered an invaluable perspective on the challenges faced by many businesses today, including those in early childhood education.

“We are so appreciative of Mark, Wasan, and Tiffany for this opportunity to help raise both awareness and support for the important work of Educational First Steps,” said President & CEO Vickie Allen.  “The small business owners, directors, and educators in the childcare centers that EFS partners with are so vital to the health and success of our local community, and it is truly special to be able to shine this spotlight on them.”

EFS transforms existing childcare centers into nationally accredited preschools in a period of 36 months at no cost to the centers or parents.  By securing national accreditation, centers become true preschools, preparing children for kindergarten and beyond and placing them on a path to success.

“Surpassing the $1 million goal reflects North Texas’s belief in the mission of Educational First Steps and the importance of early childhood education,” said Allen. “[The event’s] success is an indicator of the collective effort to address an issue that plagues the health and vitality of our economy.”

About the author

Mindia Whittier