Child Trends Comments on Technical Assistance Needs and Priorities on Implementation and Coordination of Early Childhood Development Programs in American Indian and Alaska Native Communities

Child Trends has responded to a Request for Information from the federal Administration for Children and Families (ACF) on technical assistance (TA) needs for American Indian and Alaska Native communities providing early childhood programs and services. In our response, we used the terms “Indigenous Nations, Peoples, and communities” to recognize that ACF TA serves Alaska Natives, American Indians, Native Hawaiians, and Other Pacific Islanders, and that our comments are applicable to all these populations. We sought to emphasize that TA that is grounded in a strong understanding of the Indigenous communities being served, and that occurs in true partnership with these communities, can be a powerful means of supporting the effective implementation of early childhood systems.

Our comments are based on decades of experience in conducting research and analysis and providing support and TA to a variety of leaders, including those within Indigenous Nations; to programs that serve Indigenous children and families; to early childhood programs; and to states. The following are highlighted recommendations for TA providers from our comments: