updated: 5/30/2012 1:13:43 PM
A Madison County nonprofit that provides services to children needs to secure thousands of dollars in donations, or it will likely close. Gateway Inc. is struggling to deal with a 29 percent decrease in total funding since 2009. The organization provides child-care, education and therapy services.
May 30, 2012
Anderson, Ind.; May 16, 2012 – Gateway Inc., a local non-profit helping children of all abilities reach their highest potential through education and therapies, is making a public appeal for support in the face of closing its doors after more than 58 years of serving the Anderson and Madison County communities. The area non-profit serves as Anderson’s only National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) and Level 4 Path to QUALITY nationally accredited child care center.
Success stories, such as that of Kayla Skinner, highlight the breadth of work the child care center provides. Kayla Skinner, of Anderson, Indiana, was introduced to sign language at the age of one in hopes of jumpstarting her ability to communicate with her Mother and others through the services provided by Gateway Inc. Kayla, who just recently celebrated her second birthday, started using Gateway’s services in November of 2010. Upon entering the program, Kayla was beginning to walk and show signs of non-verbal expression. Through the program, Kayla as been able to rapidly enrich her communication skills through the use of non-verbal and verbal education. In addition to improving her verbal skills, Kayla can now use sign language to communicate with her family as well as other children who are unable to speak. These skills and other resources were provided by the Gateway staff at the Anderson childcare center facility.
“Anytime I have a concern about my daughter, whether it is a developmental, social or just a ‘first-time Mother’ concern, Gateway takes the time to talk to me and share their advice experience and knowledge” said Jenni Skinner, Mother of Kayla. “Kayla has improved so much through her care at Gateway and it is this fact that will better her chances of getting a good education later on in her life.”
Like many other area non-profits and organizations, Gateway has seen a decrease in both donations and grant funding. The most recent, in a line of funding struggles, came with a $40,000 decrease in grant funding from the Children’s Bureau for Crisis Respite for the 2011–2012 fiscal year. This and additional funding decreases have resulted in a 29 percent decrease in total funding since 2009.
“It is stories like Kayla’s that are at the heart Gateway’s mission as one of Anderson’s remaining certified and accredited child care centers” said Sara Krumme, executive director of Gateway. “With renewed community support, it is our hope to continue providing these critical and very much needed services. Without the support of our community, Gateway will have no other choice but to close its doors within the calendar year.”
Gateway Association Inc. is located at 1215 Jackson Street in Anderson and was founded in 1953 and works under the philosophy that all children have special needs deserving of an all-inclusive approach to early education in order to develop appropriate skills while learning and growing together.
Since 1986, Gateway has provided desperately needed respite care services to more than 200 area families. Respite Care is a family support program designed to provide short-term, temporary relief and crisis relief to parents or primary caregivers of children and adults with special needs. Respite services help support a family’s individual goals and plan of care. Gateway has provided more than 13,000 hours of respite care from January 2011 through 2012.
Paths to QUALITY is Indiana’s new voluntary child care quality rating system, created to assist parents in identifying and selecting quality child care and recognize providers for ongoing efforts to achieve higher standards of quality than the minimum state licensing requirements. Indiana Paths to QUALITY establishes four levels of quality that apply to licensed child care centers, licensed family child care homes, and registered child care ministries. The fourth level, National Accreditation, is the highest level a care center can earn.
NAEYC Accreditation represents the mark of quality in early childhood education. To achieve NAEYC Accreditation, early childhood education programs volunteer to be measured against the most robust and rigorous national standards on education, health, and safety.
Community members willing to donate to the efforts of Gateway can do so by making checks payable to Gateway Association Inc. Donations can be mailed to Gateway Association, P.O. Box 1182, Anderson, Indiana 46016. In addition to donations, several events to benefit Gateway will be held throughout the summer months. Each weekend through May 20, PayLess grocery stores at both Cross and Main Streets will hold rummage sales. Booth space is available and open to the community for a price of $10 per day or $20 each weekend. Additional details can be found at www.Gateway-Assoc.org.
Source: Gateway Association