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Solve. Today and forever.

October 2010

Child Care Means Business

Sheila Fryar-Ashley, proprietor of Little Busy Bodies day care in Brooklyn.
Many poor women could offer day care in their homes, but don’t have the training, business background, or money to get started. And without quality, affordable child care, struggling parents can be held back from jobs and educational opportunities—preventing families from escaping poverty.

The Business Outreach Center Network has successfully tackled both supply and demand in poor neighborhoods—creating 2,000 slots for kids, 84 new businesses, and 156 new jobs. Trust grants totaling $255,000 from 2005 through 2008 helped the Network offer financing and workshops on everything from early childhood development to bookkeeping, helping women find ways to start, improve, and expand home-based child care in East New York, Bed-Stuy, Corona, the Lower East Side, and other neighborhoods. In addition, 288 women who were in business got advice from the Network on hiring more staff and accommodating more kids.

“In order to develop thinking and motor skills, young minds must be stimulated,” says Pat White, senior program officer for children and families at The Trust. “One of our grants brought in CUNY’s Professional Development Institute to teach day care providers with little formal education how to integrate books, exercises, songs, and lesson plans appropriate for various age groups.”

Sheila Fryar-Ashley, who runs Little Busy Bodies day care center in Brownsville, Brooklyn, learned how to expand her business through marketing and parent referrals, which soon had a full enrollment of twelve kids and now has a waiting list. She employs two assistants and has transformed the first floor of her house into a home away from home for infants and toddlers.

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