Freedom House is licensed as a family daycare provider by the State of Wisconsin and offers free full time, 5-days/week services to residents of the shelter who have no other childcare options.
Why did we make this investment? In the past residents had to turn down jobs because they had no one to care for their children – they had no family, they had no friends and didn’t qualify for subsidized childcare (you must be out of work a minimum of 6 months to even be considered for subsidized care). In our view, turning down a job or a way to provide for your family because of a lack of childcare is quite simply NOT OKAY. In addition to daily childcare coverage, we also provide educational and growth experiences for all children under our care.
Two members of our current Childcare staff, Family Care Coordinator Tameika Hughes; and Childcare Coordinator Crystal Champeau, are both Freedom House graduates. They know full well the challenge of taking children on job interviews, the fears of accepting an overnight shift with no one to care for the children and the dilemma of finding someone affordable who can provide high quality care. The goal of the childcare center is to give a hand up in life to help parents reach their dream of having a healthier, more stable life for their family, according to Child Care Administrator Sarah York.
The childcare center is open from 7 am to 4 pm weekdays and is available only to current Freedom House residents. Our plan is to one day offer the facility to former residents with childcare needs and even expand coverage so that people working swing shifts and weekends also have quality childcare options. The long-term vision is to eventually open the center to members of the community and use the revenue it generates to fund Freedom House programs.