Kids Co. is helping our community stay strong during this time of crisis. The COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc on all of our lives. As Washington state is under a “stay-home, stay-safe” mandate, most of our centers are closed. The three we have open are for the kids of our workforce heroes—healthcare providers, first responders, and families in vulnerable positions—all free of charge.
We don’t know how long we’ll need to provide this service, or if we’ll be able to open more of our centers for this crucial service since all Kids Co. centers are located on school campuses. Until SPS and MISD give’s us the go ahead, we have no access.
For the Kids Co. centers that remain open, it is crucial for us to minimize the risks of spreading coronavirus. Our plan of action is designed to help our child care centers maintain health and safety standards and social distancing directives while providing our much needed service.
To minimize the risks of spreading coronavirus, Kids Co.’s open centers have limited capacity, with a student-teacher ratio of 4 to 1. Child care sites are following the guidelines of the Washington Department of Health, Department of Children, Youth, and Families, and other related agencies.
To help staff and families feel more secure during these uncertain times, our program professionals have quickly and adeptly created COVID-19 guidelines and work plans, including:
- in-depth Emergency COVID Procedures Manual
- daily health check list
- cleaning check list
- action plan should a student or teacher become ill
All are designed to blunt the chances of spreading the illness within our programs.
Furthermore, our professional child care staff have developed emergency care programming for the kids to keep them safe with social distancing but also keeps them learning while having fun. We want to ease the worries of our kids by giving them a place to play and just be kids.
In attempts to keep the space germ free and aid our commitment to not spreading the virus, we’re providing each student with a plastic box that contains necessities such as markers, scissors, #2 and colored pencils, glue sticks, etc. Giving kids their own kits of basic supplies will minimize their contact with commonly used, every-day materials, mitigating cross contamination. It also aids teachers in their efforts to help kids maintain social distancing. This new implemented practice will help curb the spread of this terrible disease while minimizing the trauma on our most vulnerable kids.
This all comes at a very high price tag. Kids Co. has 3 of our 15 locations open to provide care for our workforce heroes that is free of charge so we have no generated income. With a 1:4 teacher to child ratio for safety and social distancing protocols, 91% of the $629 per week cost per child is to pay staff. We also had to cancel our major fundraising auction—another financial hit! We have set up a COVID-19 Emergency Fund to help support our efforts. You literally can make a difference in this fight to save all of us by supporting the front-line workers with child care. To make a donation, click here.
The “stay-home, stay-safe” mandate is truly the ultimate act of love for all humankind. Kids Co. is doing everything we can but we can’t do this for long without you.
With a full heart I wish you all good health, safe space, and a bright tomorrow.