AVANCE /ah-vahn-ceh/ Spanish: to advance, progress or improve.

Our Mission: Unlocking America’s Potential by strengthening families in at-risk communities through effective parent education and support programs

Boy's sharing paint

AVANCE-Waco is unlocking Waco’s potential by strengthening families in our communities through effective parenting education and support programs. In 2002, the late Waco philanthropist Bernard Rapoport saw the dire need in our community for the services AVANCE offers. With his enthusiasm and generous support, AVANCE opened a chapter that year to serve the families of South Waco, a predominantly impoverished Latino neighborhood. In our eleven-year history, AVANCE-Waco has served over 1,600 parents and children, making great strides in equipping local families with the knowledge and skills for greater educational success. AVANCE Waco is learning from the successes of AVANCE chapters throughout the state who have shown us that the greatest impact on our community can be made by partnering with the school district. Parental involvement is increased, overhead is kept low and children and parents alike transition into the schools with greater ease and success. To this end, AVANCE-Waco is pleased to partner with Waco Independent School District to offer our signature Parent-Child Education Program, as well as classes in ESL and GED with a focus on workforce development, in the former North Waco Elementary School and the Greater Waco Advanced Manufacturing Academy.

AVANCE's Parent-Child Education Program (PCEP) model is intensive, and parents must make a nine-month commitment to be eligible for the program. The course consists of weekly three-hour classes that span the school calendar of September to May, and includes parenting classes, early childhood education for the children of adult participants, home visits, transportation to and from program services, educational toy making instruction, community resource speakers, and special events and holiday celebrations. Graduates of the program are encouraged to continue participating in a second phase focused on Adult Basic Education (ABE) or GED, or English as a Second Language (ESL) that we offer on-site in collaboration with McLennan Community College Adult Education. Our ESL classes are focused on English and Math for the Workplace, and students complete the classes with greater financial and educational capacity.

Using a renowned dual-generation model, AVANCE empowers families to break the cycle of poverty by fostering parenting knowledge and skills that directly impact children’s development, while also providing the early education necessary for children’s long-term academic and personal success. Read more about our award-winning program here (and that could link to the Program page).

Parent Education & Interactive Literacy Activity:

The Parenting curriculum consists of 27 bilinguals lessons which serve as the fundamental service of the AVANCE Parent-Child Education Program. Taught weekly over nine months, the comprehensive program...

Continue Reading

Mom with her Daughter

Educational Toy Making:

Children learn through play, and toys are the child’s primary tools for learning. However, for children living in poverty, toys are many times a luxury that parents cannot afford, and toys labeled as “educational” are usually more expensive than “regular” toys. In the educational toy making time of the class, parents are empowered to create toys that be used to engage their...

Continue Reading


Community Resource Speakers:

Each week, professionals from the community join the class to offer information on a variety of topics, from family violence and prevention, health and wellness and the prevention of illness, nutrition, financial literacy...

Continue Reading

Parents learning

Home Visitation:

As documented by TexProtects, the Texas Association for the Protection of Children, some of Texas’ costliest social problems—child abuse and neglect, school failure, poverty, unemployment and crime—are rooted in early childhood...

Continue Reading