Letter from the Founder
As a mom returning to work after a year of maternity leave, I was disappointed by the limited options for childcare aligned with my values regarding a safe, healthy, and ecofriendly environment. Most options for childcare fell, indeed, well short: serving overly-processed food, creating tons of landfill-bound disposable waste, shutting out Nature, and endangering children with toxic chemicals from harsh cleaning supplies. The well-intentioned, committed staff did not have the time or resources, nor, as a result, the vision, to make needed changes given the lack of systemic consciousness within which they operated.
Inspired by the need to serve our children better, I founded Alba Research & Consulting, ARC LLC, around this time. I was eager to connect existing ‘green’ products and services to the child care setting. My goal was to create a more health-conscious and eco-friendly environment for our young children to thrive. After a few conversations, our dedicated team of working mothers and professional allies began to work towards developing a solution.
We began conducting research on what works to motivate behavioral changes, and what motivates the incorporation of green technology to what matters the most: our future generation. Children learn about sustainability through observation and immersion in a healthy environment, with sustainable practices in place. We therefore created an initiative facilitating the curriculum-wide incorporation of these values while sustainably-sourcing the physical environment and materials provided.
Our certification initiative motivates the adoption of best practices in the field. Through an advisory committee, comprised of education-and-sustainability leaders, we channel guiding wisdom towards the certification’s continual improvement. We partnered with Florida International University’s Global Risk and Corporate Responsibility track to gauge demand for the initiative and fine-tune our proposal. Now we are here, pleased to present our initiative and seek your involvement to begin in earnest.
There are several opportunities for engagement as an advisory committee member, sponsor, or as a participating child care center desiring sustainability. Please join us. Not only will we evaluate current practices and curriculums regarding sustainability. But we’ll also provide a systematic, evidence-based approach to improving early child care education by incorporating sustainability into the curriculum and the center’s physical environment.
Dr. Ilyana Albarrán
Founder and CEO