Building Brighter Childhoods
Our Vision: A Colorado where all children and families thrive.
Our Mission: Illuminate Colorado strengthens families, organizations and communities to prevent child maltreatment.
With a research-based approach that emphasizes building promotive and protective factors, we address systemic and multi-sector issues by collaborating with families and partners at the community, state and national level to develop and implement powerful programs, policies and initiatives that keep kids safe in Colorado.
What Does Illuminate Colorado Do?
Preventing child maltreatment is work that’s both broad and complex. Illuminate Colorado tackles this by approaching the issue in different ways and at multiple levels of society. Only in this way can we truly create lasting impact.
We strengthen families by providing services and resources directly to families; by conducting trainings for parents and caregivers that equip them with the skills they need; and by advocating for policies that support families.
We strengthen organizations by providing education and support to professionals through trainings, conferences, and publications; and by changing organizational practice through implementing new policies, identifying areas for improvement, and providing technical assistance to increase organizational capacity.
We strengthen communities by providing trainings and resources that make our communities stronger; by advancing social norms that make it okay to ask for help; by supporting coalition spaces that foster multi-sector, family and system collaboration; and by advocating for policies that support communities.
To learn more about Illuminate Colorado’s programs and initiatives, visit our programs page!
Our foundations are the underpinnings on which our values are built.
They transcend individual values, but are core to living them out.
Equitable & Inclusive
We root our approach to strengthening families and communities in the acknowledgement that risk and protective factors for child maltreatment are impacted by structural inequities, including pervasive and systemic racism and white supremacy, both overt and passive.
Family & Community Driven
We embrace all perspectives and definitions of family and community. Our strategies, decisions, and actions are driven by the voice and input of Colorado families and communities.
We see child and caregiver well-being as interdependent and all people as part of family and community structures. Every approach to and with families encourages and creates the benefits of connections.
We recognize that all parts of our work are interconnected. Each level of the Spectrum of Prevention is key to achieving our mission by seeking to identify and understand strengths, risks, and how individuals, communities, organizations, and systems are situated.
Just like our foundations, we hold ourselves accountable
to ensure our behavior reflects our values.
We are innovative and responsive to the needs of families, partners, and the field of child maltreatment prevention.
We pursue growth and continuous quality improvement.
We practice empathy with everyone, everywhere, and in every situation.
We demonstrate integrity in our personal and professional lives.
The development of Illuminate Colorado was the result of careful consideration, strategic planning, and due diligence. The thorough planning and implementation process would not have been possible without the generous support of our Board of Directors, the Denver Active 20-30 Children’s Foundation, and Social Venture Partners Denver.
In October 2014, the Board of Directors of the Colorado Alliance for Drug Endangered Children (Colorado DEC) voted to explore a partnership with Prevent Child Abuse Colorado (PCA Colorado) and the Colorado Chapter of FASD United (formerly the National Organization on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome) following years of close collaboration.
In January 2015, Colorado DEC was selected as one of two inaugural investees in a Social Venture Partners Denver and Denver Active 20/30 Children’s Foundation Capacity Building Project. This project focused on uniting the work of the three organizations, and after a year of careful consideration, strategic planning, legal research, and financial due diligence, Illuminate Colorado was formed in December 2015. Governed by a single Board of Directors and operating under a joint services agreement, programs are fully integrated to leverage resources and increase capacity to implement powerful programs to keep kids safe.
Beginning October 1, 2016, Illuminate Colorado added a fourth agency to the strategic partnership – Sexual Abuse Forever Ending (SAFE). SAFE works to educate and empower children and adults to reduce stigma and prevent child sexual abuse.
Full consolidation of the four organizations was complete on January 1, 2017.