Team EVMS supports Minus 9 to 5 - A new formula for Hampton Roads' Youngest Residents
A child grows, develops and learns from the time a woman discovers she’s pregnant through the child’s fifth birthday. Preparing Hampton Roads' families from conception to kindergarten is exactly why Minus 9 to 5 exists.
Each year over 15,000 babies are born in Chesapeake, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Suffolk, and Virginia Beach. Many start their lives with family and health challenges they may never overcome.
Nearly 1,500 babies have low-birth weights that cause health complications. 136 of them will not live to see their first birthday. Approximately 57% will live in poverty. 40% will be raised by single mothers. Nearly half will spend their first five years in informal childcare. As many as 16% of these children enter kindergarten not ready to learn. Studies show that children who start school without the social, emotional and educational skills to succeed will fall behind. And, they likely will never catch up with their peers. This can set the stage for children to struggle for a lifetime. Many area families, especially those living in poverty, have no access to programs and services that exist to help them and their children. This barrier strains families and create long-lasting negative impact on their children.
Minus 9 to 5 is regional with an emphasis on families in five Hampton Roads cities: Norfolk, Portsmouth, Suffolk and Virginia Beach. They are focused on helping the whole child — physically, socially, emotionally and cognitively. They believe that by helping economically disadvantaged families we can improve early care and education for all area children and families.