A Quest to Find Child Care Ends with YWCA
March 10, 2021
YWCA Early Childhood Education parents Renae and Jessica reflect on their search for high-quality child care and the journey of realizing it through YWCA Minneapolis.
Before Stella was born, we did an exhaustive search for full-time, four-star parent aware and NAEYC-certified child care and sent her to YWCA Children’s Center at Ecolab for her first year — it was a convenient location to work for both of us at the time. The infant rooms there were gentle, welcoming places for Stella (and her nervous moms!), and all three of us loved the staff and sense of community there.
Finding a Location Closer to Home
When one of us changed jobs, child care closer to home became more important, so Stella moved to YWCA Midtown at the beginning of 2020. We’ve found it to be an equally friendly place and Stella learns so much every day.
A Short Adventure in Full-Time Working and Parenting At Home
The pandemic shrunk our family life way down: no visits from far-away family, very few playdates for Stella, and almost no errands or other excursions (at least indoor ones). We kept Stella at home for the first three months (age 15-18 months) while both working from home full-time. It was an adventure! We felt lucky to be able to manage parenting while working like that for a while but were also glad when the public health science caught up and we knew more about the risks and benefits of child care.
“We’ve been thankful and very impressed by how hard everyone at YWCA Midtown has worked to keep one another safe and healthy this whole time.”
Stella went back in mid-June 2020 and quickly settled right back in. We’ve been thankful and very impressed by how hard everyone at YWCA Midtown has worked to keep one another safe and healthy this whole time.
From Tiny, Wiggly Infant to Almost-Preschooler
Stella started with YWCA Minneapolis as a tiny, wiggly infant. Now she’s a tall, chatty, wiggly almost-preschooler. She loves to move around! Running, walking, bike rides in the trailer, climbing, jumping, swings and slides. She likes reading picture books and tucking her stuffed animals in for naps. She draws or colors almost every day. She describes herself as a helper and feels proud when she can do simple chores at home or be kind to a friend at school.
“Stella started with YWCA Minneapolis as a tiny, wiggly infant. Now she’s a tall, chatty, wiggly almost-preschooler.”
Now That She Has the Words, Talking about Her Friends and Teachers
She benefits from the care, attention and expertise she gets from her teachers — and all the loving adults she sees at school — every day. And we’ve been able to lean on their expertise when we have questions or concerns about how to support Stella’s learning at home.
We know she feels the same way because now that she has the words to do it, she talks constantly about her friends and teachers when she’s at home. We were hoping for care and programming that reflected our priorities around respect, diversity and health — and reflected the diversity of our neighborhood. We found this with YWCA.