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Shelter set to offer preschool, care for homeless children

May 2, 2016
AccessOutcomesUniversal and Targeted
Lauren Lindstrom
The Blade

Homeless families will soon have a new resource for preschool and child care, as Family House readies an on-site center which will assist only homeless children.

Staff at the central-city shelter are preparing to reopen a preschool and child-care center, which will now be available to children living in three other Toledo shelters. It is expected to be open by the end of May, said Renee Palacios, Family House executive director.

“Our preschool will be exclusively homeless kids,” she said. “We’re really excited about this because a lot of times our kids are getting bullied and singled out because of their homeless status. By having a space at one shelter that the kids from other shelters can come to … it will cut down the bullying. The kids will feel more supported because they’re all in the same boat.”

The program will provide crucial stability and chances for academic and emotional development, Ms. Palacios said.

Family House has partnered with Ms. Cathy’s Day Care, a licensed day-care center in the central city. Ms. Cathy’s will run a second location out of Family House, called Ms. Cathy’s Family Comes First Early Learning Center. Families can apply for subsidies through Lucas County Job and Family Services. Family House will cover utilities and other costs.

Toledo City Council last week allocated $59,716 in Community Development Block Grant money to Family House for the upcoming fiscal year.