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Who We Are: Action for Children’s mission is to transform the lives of children in Central Ohio by supporting, empowering and advocating for the adults who make the biggest impact on children's lives-their parents, caregivers, and teachers. Formed in 1972 as the child care referral agency of Central Ohio, we’ve grown to be much more. Today, our mission and programs are focused on making the most of the 2,000 days between a child's birth and their first day of Kindergarten, when 85% of the brain is developed and so many physical, intellectual, and social foundations are laid for future success.

What We Do: Action for Children provides essential programs and services throughout Central Ohio, which include: child care and early learning information and resources free of charge for parents; career resources and professional development for early childhood educators; workshops and technical assistance for programs offering care for school-age children; comprehensive employer consulting services for employers planning and providing work/life benefits;parenting resources and classes; and resources for public awareness and advocacy on issues involving child care and early childhood education. 


Why We're Important: Babies are born learning, with brains that form 1 million synapses each second. 85% of brain development happens from birth to age 5, setting the foundation for all future learning, health, and success. Investing in the early years has been shown to: reduce delinquency rates; raise adult employment, wage prospects, and community engagement; and create vibrant, productive, contributing members of society. Action for Children focuses on these first 2,000 days by supporting those adults who make the biggest impact on their lives and who are literally shaping their future.


How We Impact the Community: For children to succeed in school and beyond, they must be nurtured by strong families, qualified and compassionate educators, and vibrant communities. There are only 2,000 days from birth to school entry, so every day counts. By investing in parents and providers, we are investing in children, their futures and the community at large, and last year alone, our work reached 50,000 children throughout Central Ohio.


How You Can Help: You can help by referring parents and early childhood educators to our website,, to discover resources, sign up for workshops, and search for child care options in Central Ohio. While visiting our website, you can learn about volunteer opportunities, upcoming community and partner events and make a contribution to our vital mission. Research shows that for every $1.00 invested in early learning, we save $7.00 in future expenditures per child— with your gift of time, talent or treasure, you are positively transforming the lives of children in Central Ohio.

Connect with Action for Children

78 Jefferson Avenue

Columbus, OH 43215

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Executive Director: Eric Karolak, CEO


Development Director:Jessica Brown, Director of Organizational Advancement


Board Chair: Andy Alderman, Cardinal Health Senior Vice President, Strategy & Business Development

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