Sowing Seeds for the Future:
Investing in Early Childhood

Join us for our 8th Annual KIDS COUNT Conference!
8AM – 3PM
Embassy Suites
1000 Woodward Place NE
Albuquerque, NM 

We’re excited to invite you to the 8th Annual KIDS COUNT Conference Sowing Seeds for the Future: Investing in Early Childhood. Early bird registration is open – from now until April 15, 2020 you can get tickets for $65 ($15 off the regular price)! See below for registration link.



Children’s chances of being healthy, doing well in school, and achieving their potential are tied to their experiences in the earliest years. Children learn more quickly during their early years, and the first five years of a child’s life are particularly important because that is when 90 percent of the brain’s neurological foundation is built. High-quality early childhood programs like home visiting, child care assistance, and pre-K lead to improved child well-being and are linked to significant long-term improvements for children and savings for states. Yet, 56 percent of New Mexico’s 3- and 4-year-olds did not attend some form of preschool program in 2018, with rates even higher among Hispanic children.

This year’s KIDS COUNT Conference will center on the importance of adequately investing in early childhood programs and agencies. With much support, Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham created the cabinet-level Early Childhood Education and Care Department (NMECECD) in 2019. Resourcing this new department will be essential to reversing the impact of years of underfunding for early childhood care and education services. 


GREAT NEWS! Newly appointed Secretary Elizabeth Groginsky of the NM Early Childhood Education and Care Department will be a Keynote Speaker, along with other state and community leaders who will speak to the ways in which their leadership is laying a foundation for expanding access to early care for New Mexico’s kids. Other speakers will be announced soon!


NM Voices will honor four youth for their work at a luncheon awards ceremony during the conference. The Youth Spirit Award is open to all New Mexico youth ages 13 to 25 demonstrating remarkable service and leadership within the past two years. Awardees receive recognition as well as financial support to put towards their cause of choice as they see fit, including college tuition fees, charitable donations, or other expenses associated with equity, community service, and social justice. Read more about and access the online application here. Please forward this call for applications far and wide to youth you know who should be recognized and honored for their work. The deadline to apply is April 15, 2020. And, as always, we’ll honor courageous advocates across New Mexico working on behalf of kids through the NM Voices Spirit of Hope Awards.


Early bird registration is open – from now until April 15, 2020 you can get tickets for $65 ($15 off the regular price)! The online registration platform allows you to register as an individual or a group, and will also include options to pre-pay for CEUs (NASW and ECE training credits). If the ticket price is a barrier to attendance, you can contact about discounted pricing. REGISTER HERE now to get the reduced ticket price. 


Become a partner to kids by supporting the 8th Annual KIDS COUNT Conference by selecting one of several sponsorship options and levels, underwriting a Youth Spirit Award or Spirit of Hope Award, or purchasing an advertisement in the program. See our online Sponsorship Packet for more details about ways to be a partner for the 2020 Kids Count conference and reach an audience of more than 500 community leaders and stakeholders working to improve child well-being in New Mexico. 


Each year we offer community partners affordable space to share information about your work, products, or education. We have a limited number of vendor tables available, set up in a highly trafficked space at the event. For $150, you can reserve a table. To secure a vendor table, read more here, or email


This year we are glad to announce we’ll be offering the following CEUs, which you can add to your cart for $20 when you register online: 

  • 3.0 Social Work CEUs, approved by NASW-NM
  • 3.0 Counseling CEUs (counseling and social work CEUs are reciprocal)
  • 2.0 ECE hours in Health, Safety, and Nutrition
  • 4.0 ECE hours in Professionalism


Mark yourself as “GOING” on our Facebook event to put it on your calendar and tell others how they can learn more about early childhood programs.