April 9, 2019

Month of the Young Child: Celebrating Early Childhood

With Trying Together having designated April as the Month of the Young Child (MOYC), Kidsburgh asked Executive Director Cara Ciminillo to explain why access to high-quality early childhood care and education is so vital for our youngest generation.


In the article, Ciminillo explains why access to early learning and care is critical and moves on to discuss the roles of advocacy, policy, and investments. Identifying connections to Trying Together’s public policy agenda, Ciminillo explains that by successfully advocating for increased investments in early childhood, we’re working to ensure that all young children have access to affordable, high-quality programs; that all early childhood professionals are being compensated appropriately; and that all early childhood programs have access to the support they need to provide high-quality services.


To read the full article, visit Kidsburgh’s website!


March 28, 2019

Work Together Wednesday’s

Join the Carnegie Science Center every Wednesday during the Month of the Young Child (April) from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. for a series of collaborative building activities inside of their Little Learner Clubhouse. All Little Learner Clubhouse activities are included with the purchase of general admission.

Children under the age of 2 receive free admission.

About the Little Learner Clubhouse

Aspiring scientists age 6 and under and their families are invited to explore this nature-inspired hub for free-play and hands-on activities! Located on the fourth floor of the Science Center, Little Learner Clubhouse is a colorful gallery featuring a variety of interactive exhibits designed to foster scientific curiosity, including:

  • The Clubhouse
  • The Learning Tree
  • The Water Table
  • The Tomato Stand
  • The Book Cove
  • The Baby Garden
  • The Button Wall

Buy Tickets and Learn More

Individuals interested in purchasing tickets online, learning more about the Little Learner Clubhouse, or viewing available ticket discounts can do so by visiting the Carnegie Science Center website. Discounts are available for Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) cardholders, active military members, veterans, and more. Discounts require specific verification. Please see their website for details.

Ticket Costs:
  • General Admission Adult: $19.95
  • General Admission Adult 65+: $14.95
  • General Admission Child: $11.95
  • General Admission Child Under 2: Free
  • Carnegie Science Center Membership Holders: Free


March 19, 2019

Tech Tuesday: Food Science!

Join the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh to delve into the science of sprouting food scraps! Did you know you can “force” carrot tops, sprout avocado pits, and regrow celery? Look closely and learn about science experiments to try at home. This program is drop-in, so guests may come and go as they please! This program is designed for our youngest learners (0-5) but is suitable for all ages.

For more information, visit the event page!


March 4, 2019

Month of The Young Child Events Announced

Throughout April, early childhood nonprofit Trying Together will host and highlight local events in celebration of the Month of the Young Child (MOYC). Held annually in April, MOYC is a month-long celebration in recognition of the important role that early childhood care and education play in the lives of children and families.

“While we designate April as the time of year when we formally recognize early care and education professionals and family caregivers with special events, we want them to know we value them for the important work they do everyday to support healthy development for the young children the care for and educate,” said Cara Ciminillo, Executive Director of Trying Together.

MOYC Organization Event Submissions

New this year, local nonprofits hosting events for young children in April are invited to submit details to Trying Together for inclusion in promotions. Organizations interested in submitting their events must meet the following requirements:

  • The event is hosted in April
  • The event is open to the public
  • The event features opportunities for young children (birth – nine), explores early childhood topics, or provides professional development opportunities for early childhood educators, families, and/or professionals

To submit your events, visit For questions on applying, contact Maria Pisano at 412.421.3889 or

Annual Celebration Dinner

On Thursday, April 4 from 5:00 – 7:30 p.m., Trying Together will host its their Annual Celebration Dinner at the Carnegie Museum of Art. This event, featuring keynote speaker Illah Nourbakhsh, CMU CREATE Lab Director of the Community Robotics, Education, and Technology Empowerment, will bring together local early childhood care and education professionals in celebration of the work they do to support Pennsylvania’s youngest generation. Guests will enjoy a dinner buffet, photo booth, prizes, and more. Tickets are currently available online for $12 per person, or $100 for a Director’s Table, at



This year’s Annual Celebration Dinner is officially sold-out! If you still require a ticket, Trying Together may be able to accommodate the request. Please contact Sharon Seitam at 412.421.3889 or


The Student Affiliate Dinner

On Thursday, April 11 from 5:00 – 9:00 p.m., Carlow at Greensburg and Westmoreland County Community College (WCCC) will host the 9th Annual Student Affiliate Dinner at WCCC to celebrate local early childhood education students and community. Featuring keynote speaker Dr. Melissa Sherfinski, the conversation will explore how educators can empower students through equitable practices. Register for The Student Affiliate Dinner by Wednesday, April 3 at 4:30 p.m.

For questions about The Student Affiliate Dinner, contact Vicki Hricik at 724.925.4013 or

The Homewood Block Party

On Saturday, April 27 from 11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m., Trying Together, the Homewood Early Learning Hub, and Homewood-Brushton Family Support Center will host their annual Homewood Block Party on Kelly Street. Young children and their families are invited to enjoy an afternoon of free activities, food, performance, and information from local partners about the work they do. No registration is required.

For questions or more information, contact Rosie Hogan at


March 1, 2019

Annual Celebration Dinner

Join Trying Together and early childhood colleagues at the Annual Celebration Dinner to celebrate the work you do for young children. Enjoy dinner, a photo booth, and prizes.


Thursday, April 4, 2019
5:00 – 7:30 p.m.

Carnegie Museum of Art
4400 Forbes Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15213

Registration Is Now Closed

  • Individual Ticket: $12.00
  • Director’s Table (10 Tickets): $100

A buffet meal will be served. Please indicate at time of purchase if you require gluten-or dairy-free options or a kosher meal. Limited quantities will be available.

If you are still interested in a ticket, Trying Together may be able to accommodate the request. Please contact Sharon Seitam at 412.421.3889 or for more details.


Charles “Chuck” Herring, EdD

Keynote Speaker

Illah R. Nourbakhsh
K&L Gates Professor of Ethics and Computational Technologies
Director CREATE Lab
Carnegie Mellon University


PNC Grow Up Great 15th Anniversary


Sharon Seitam, Operations Manager


April 2, 2018

April is Month of The Young Child

Throughout April, Trying Together will host the Month of The Young Child to focus public attention on the needs and rights of young children, their families, and the adults who interact with them.


In the Pittsburgh-area, Trying Together observes the Month of The Young Child by providing advocacy, resources, and events that support high-quality early learning experiences for young children.

“We look forward to recognizing the Month of The Young Child every year,” said Cara Ciminillo, Trying Together Executive Director. “During the month we take a moment to pause and reflect not only on where the early childhood field is and where we want it to go, but on the individuals who care for and educate young children each day.”


The Annual Celebration Dinner for early care and education professionals will be held on Tuesday, April 10, 5:00 – 7:30 p.m. at the Carnegie Museum of Art and host keynote speaker William (Bill) E. Strickland, Jr. of Manchester Bidwell Corporation.

“Those in the early childhood field are often underpaid and undervalued,” said Ciminillo. “I hope the opportunity to hear from someone like Mr. Strickland whose life’s work was inspired by an educator is particularly meaningful for those in attendance.”

Trying Together will also honor early childhood advocate and professional Patricia (Pat) Cobbs (posthumously) at the Dinner.

“Miss Pat used to say, ‘It’s all about the kids!”, said Ciminillo. “Whether she was advocating on behalf of young children, or managing JLC Daycare which she owned in Swissvale, Pennsylvania, her mission was always to make sure we were doing what’s best for children.”

Later in the week, Ms. Cobbs’ family will accept The Pennsylvania Association for The Education of Young Children (PennAEYC) 2018 VOICE for Children Award on her behalf on Friday, April 13 in Hershey, Pennsylvania.

Ciminillo says the Dinner will be very celebratory as Trying Together completed its rebrand and released its five-year strategic plan earlier this year.

“Our board, partners, and staff invested a great deal of energy, expertise, and time into the rebrand and strategic planning process. With our refreshed look and name, and a clear path for the future, I’m looking forward to celebrating together with them and thanking those involved at the Dinner.”

Guests will enjoy a buffet dinner, photo booth, prizes, and more. This year’s dinner is now at capacity and has sold-out.


Trying Together staff and advocates will travel to the Pennsylvania State Capitol in Harrisburg to bring attention to the unmet needs of young children statewide. Currently, 106,000 pre-k eligible 3 and 4-year-olds lack access to publicly funded programs throughout the Commonwealth. On Wednesday, April 18, 2018 staff and advocates will visit with State Legislators and ask visitors to decorate paper stacking blocks in the Rotunda.

“Everyone has an early care or education story to tell,” says Ciminillo. “As principal members of the Pre-K for PA Campaign, we are committed to bringing those stories to policymakers’ attention to ensure every child attends a high-quality pre-k program and enters kindergarten ready to succeed.”

Participants will be able to add Polaroids, draw pictures, write their stories, and decorate with stickers on the blocks. The blocks will then be stacked to visually represent the expansive impact early childhood programs have on constituents. Those interested in joining in this or other legislative visits should submit a form at


The Homewood Block Party will be held on Saturday, April 28, 11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. on Kelly Street in front of The Homewood Early Learning Hub, a community resource of Trying Together.

“This event enables us to celebrate and connect with the children and families served through programming at the Hub and at Homewood-Brushton Family Support Center where we are the lead organization,” said Ciminillo.

The Block Party is FREE and features activities, food, performances, and resources for young children. Registration is not required. Interested vendors are asked to contact Cynthia Battle at 412-421-3889 or

Full details on the Month of The Young Child.


January 9, 2018

Month of the Young Child

First established by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) in 1971, the Week of the Young Child is an opportunity to focus public attention on the needs of young children and their families and to recognize the early childhood programs and services that meet those needs.

Over the years, with growing interest and focus, Trying Together designated the entire month of April as the Month of the Young Child (MOYC). MOYC is a time to plan how we will better meet the needs of all young children, families, caregivers, and early care and education professionals.

Elevate Early Childhood

The Month of the Young Child is a time when the dedicated work of early educators can be promoted for the essential role that it plays in our society. The events of the last few years have demonstrated just how important it is to fund, support, and elevate the work of child care. Trying Together has assembled a month full of opportunities to share the importance of early care with the audiences that need to hear it most.

Join the Celebration from Home

To celebrate the Month of the Young Child in a virtual space, Trying Together has developed several opportunities for community members to participate from home, including the following:

Social Media Activities

Take a few minutes to “shout out” or give “props” to an early care and education professional or program on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram:

When utilizing social media, make sure to tag individuals’ accounts (if possible), share your own personal stories and pictures, and include the relevant hashtags mentioned in the social media toolkit to ensure other participants can view your story!

An example post would be: 

I’d like to say thank you to @amymiller for the wonderful work she’s been doing for the past four months to support my child’s learning and healthy development! My child still can’t stop talking about the caterpillar craft he did last month! #MOYC2022

Consider sharing your personal story as a parent or caregiver on social media using the hashtags #MyStory and #MOYC2022.

Reflect on your experiences throughout 2021-22 and highlight the stories that make you smile, laugh, or feel proud. Month of the Young Child is a time of celebration and there is no better way to celebrate than by connecting with each other through our stories.

Advocate on behalf of yourself and other early care professionals by using #EssentialCaregiver

It’s so important that individuals understand just how important early educators are to developing children, because it leads to increases in resources and opportunities for your children and programs. Elevate your own stories of providing essential services to our children using #EssentialCaregiver and show pride in your work. 

Take a trip back in time by scrolling or looking through old early childhood pictures, whether they are of yourself or a loved one.

Think back to those individual moments and cherish the memory of that time. You can also take this time to reflect on the growth of that young person. In order to do this, find a photo that stands out to you and share it on social media using the hashtags #MyStory and #MOYC2022. Take this opportunity to share a fond memory with others!

Use the Month of the Young Child Social Media Toolkit to access customizable social media templates, graphics, and more!

Our social media toolkit has linked resources, photos, graphics, and example posts for the entire month.

NAEYC Week of the Young Child

Celebrate the daily themes featured during the National Association for the Education of Young Children’s (NAEYC) Week of the Young Child (WOYC).

Kick-Off Saturday (April 2, 2022): Get your preparations together for a week of fun early childhood celebrations! Make a list of your celebration plans and share a picture (or screenshot) of it on social media using #WOYC22 and #MOYC2022!

Music Monday (April 3, 2022): Celebrate music and early literacy by sharing a picture or video of your favorite music-based activity. Highlight why music and early literacy matter to you! Use #WOYC22 and #MOYC2022 to join the thread!

Tasty Tuesday (April 4, 2022): Celebrate the ways that health, science, nutrition, and fitness fuel the early learning community by sharing a picture of your favorite experiment, lesson, or exercise using #WOYC22 and #MOYC2022.

Work Together Wednesday (April 5, 2022): Celebrate teamwork and collaboration by sharing a picture of your child(ren)’s collaborative creations, whether it is an art piece, a blanket fort, a block tower, or something else! Use #WOYC22 and #MOYC2022 to join the conversation.

Artsy Thursday (April 6, 2022): Join the early childhood community in celebrating art by hosting a “virtual class!” Record a short video walkthrough of your favorite art activity and share it on social media using #WOYC22 and #MOYC2022!

Family Friday (April 7, 2022): Celebrate the importance of positive relationships by sharing your favorite family photos and stories on social media using #WOYC22 and #MOYC2022. Tag a friend and challenge them to share as well!


Check out our Events page to discover all of the Month of the Young Child programming available throughout April 2022. Additional details will be available in the coming weeks.

Signup to Receive Updates

If you’re interested in receiving updates on Month of the Young Child, like our Facebook pagefollow our Twitter, or signup to receive the Trying Together newsletter.

Past Events

Child Care Hiring Days for PA

With a large number of child care programs experiencing staffing shortages, Trying Together and statewide partners connected job seekers with early learning programs throughout Pennsylvania for Child Care Hiring Days for PA on March 29, 30, and 31, 2022.

During this three-day event, more than 700 ECE programs hosted walk-in hiring events, featuring on-the-spot interviews at their locations. Programs displayed yellow balloons, ribbons, or stars in front of their facility to signify that they were participating in Child Care Hiring Days for PA. The event aimed to simplify the job search and hiring process for potential applicants and promote the rewards of working in early childhood education.

A report on the outcomes and next steps will be released between April and June.

Celebrating Early Learning Programs

Trying Together offered child care programs in Allegheny County the opportunity to receive Month of the Young Child materials and experiences. Programs were able to request a mailed box of materials related to Month of the Young Child including:

  • Posters to display at their program or to give to local businesses to advertise the importance of child care in the community
  • Buttons for staff and families to wear during the month of April
  • Printed materials and resources from Trying Together and ELRC Region 5
  • A copy of this year’s PA One Book, “Saturday” by Oge Mora (will be mailed separately)

Materials were shipped at the end of March and were available on a first-come, first-served basis while supplies lasted.

In addition to requesting free materials from Trying Together, programs were also able to apply to receive a mini-grant of $500 or $2,500 to show appreciation to staff or host an event during April to strengthen the relationship between families and staff. Applications for the mini-grants are now closed. Recipients were selected based on the strength of ideas for utilizing the funds; geographic diversity throughout Allegheny County; and a needs-based assessment. Mini-grants were limited, and awardees were notified by the end of March.



Annual Celebration Dinner Group Photo 2019