Many families around the globe are struggling with the re-opening of businesses. Daycares often have extremely large classrooms that increase the exposure to many different illnesses, including COVID-19, but have been the only option for affordable childcare in the South Hills area of Pittsburgh. ABC Home hopes to change this by creating a smaller program that is truly dedicated to early infant and child development.
So far, all of the children enrolled are either immunocompromised or have family members who are immunocompromised. These families have pediatric notes stating the child's health is too fragile to enter daycares, or those in the immediate family would be in extreme danger should the child be exposed. ABC Home was able to get pediatrician approval to provide childcare for these families who otherwise would be left without options.
According to the U.S. census, there are 31,458 families with children under the age of 18 in the Pittsburgh area. Many of these homes have parents who both work, and cannot provide full-time childcare for their families. Daycares not only present significant health risks, but many have closed since the start of COVID-19, forcing these families to find alternate, safer care options. Until now, parents have been able to provide this care. As parents are asked to return to work, their options are extremely limited, and many are facing losing their jobs so they can provide care for their children.
Before ABC Home opened, the idea of a Family Child Day Care Home was novel in the area. Parents of several families approached me in November 2019 with the idea of having a "nanny who would accept multiple families and would watch the children at her house". After explaining the definition of a Family Child Day Care Home, those families jumped at the chance to have more individualized attention for their children while not limiting social development. However, March 2020 saw unprecedented changes as the pandemic swept the globe. Now, more than ever, families are looking for smaller and safer social settings for their children.
I am seeking funding today to ensure the proper space for these children and families who are desperate for care, yet have no place to turn. The current location is under extensive renovations to bring the building to meet Pennsylvania Code guidelines. To be fully licensed to operate, not only must the actual site be renovated, but specific types of toys, furniture, and equipment must be purchased. Overall, the contractor estimate for the space exceeds $100,000 and the cost of toys, nap areas, and feeding areas that meet stringent State requirements is $10,000. We cannot open until all of these licensing requirements are met.
As of now, my team consists of myself, my husband, Jon, and several Special Presenters who are willing to help create lesson plans and activities. We all cannot thank you enough from the bottom of our hearts for recognizing this urgent and growing need in our community. Your generous donations will be directly applied to providing care for infants and toddlers in need of your help.