When you think of a child-care center, you think of a happy and enjoyable place for children and families. You may not think of it as a refuge for families in crisis. However, the Chautauqua Lake Child Care Center is a safe and supportive environment for many of our families.
Our center provides day care for children ages birth to five years of age and school age care for children ages five to twelve. The center was able to assist a single dad who found himself raising his son alone after the mother became incarcerated. The three-year old made friends and found the preschool program fun and entertaining. The situation would become difficult for this father as he was laid off from employment for the winter months. The father wanted to keep the child’s care and education consistent, so he would work odd jobs during this time, but could not continue to afford the total cost of the program. The Scholarship Fund that is supported by United Way of Southern Chautauqua County, was able to offer care for this father at a reduced rate and keep the child enrolled. The child learned and played at the center for several years and was able to enter kindergarten ready to learn. Dad had comfort knowing that his child had reliable care so he could maintain employment. One day he received devastating news about his health. This father was diagnosed with a terminal illness, which would make it difficult to work and get his son to child-care and school. The grandparents stepped in to assist in their son and grandson’s care and daily living. The child remained at the center for after school care and summer care. The grandparents were able to maintain their jobs, care for their ailing son and keep their grandson’s life as consistent as possible.
Unfortunately, CLCCC sees many families in need or in difficult predicaments. Fortunately, we can offer several payment options for families, including the scholarship fund. The families can also count on the high-quality of care that the warm and nurturing teachers provide, as well as the research-based curriculum and developmental screening tools to enhance the development and education of their child.
Through the generous support from the United Way of Southern Chautauqua County, we can maintain our aim of Academic Success and high-quality care to the families in Chautauqua County. With the United Way, we can better serve the families who struggle greatly to provide a better way of life for their child (ren).
UWAYSCC 100 Years, 100 Stories blog submission by Kathy Siragusa, Program Director of the Chautauqua Lake Child Care Center. For more information about the Chautauqua Lake Child Care Center visit clccc.org or call 716-753-5851.