Community Health Network to participate in United Way of Central Indiana Day of Caring; Network employees to volunteer time, efforts at Bethany Daycare and Preschool
Indianapolis, IN---Nearly 200 Community Health Network employee volunteers will join forces August 24 and 25 to create an outdoor learning center at Bethany Daycare and Preschool, aimed at stimulating growth and development for early education. The project is part of United Way of Central Indiana Day of Caring. Community is a title sponsor of the event. Day of Caring connects people with meaningful volunteer experiences in the Central Indiana area. Volunteers work to complete projects for various United Way agencies and programs that help people learn more, earn more, and lead safe and healthy lives by focusing on education, income, health and basic needs. Media are invited for photo and interview opportunities at Bethany, located at 4702 South East Street, on Friday, August 24, from 11:00 a.m. to noon.
Community’s project is focused on United Way’s early learning partners—and providing quality, early education for all children in Central Indiana. The goal is to partner with unlicensed child care providers to help guarantee a healthy and safe atmosphere, enhance the learning and play environments, and improve curriculum and instruction.
Bethany Daycare and Preschool is a south side Indianapolis outreach ministry, which has partnered with United Way to achieve the Paths to Quality™ certification, Indiana’s Child Care Quality Rating and Improvement System. The staff at Bethany has made significant strides toward improving their care and learning environment. Community’s employee volunteers will help put Bethany on track to fulfill the requirements for Level Two certification (environment that supports children’s learning), by creating an outdoor learning center. Community’s projects, which will be guided by the expertise of partnering businesses Alderson Commercial Group, Brickman Group, and Dave Powers, architect, include:
- A boat-like climbing structure and hill slide that will initiate large motor skill development
- Building a labyrinth-style walking path to offer children a calming environment
- Landscaping and constructing garden boxes to add an element of science and nature
- Constructing and decorating a storage shed to double as a dramatic play area
“The research tells us that just under half of children in Central Indiana Title 1 schools were ready for kindergarten last year,” said Linda Hajduk, vice president of organizational effectiveness and the network’s lead on its Serve 360° employee volunteerism initiatives. “Our goal is to give Bethany Daycare and Preschool a foundation to meet higher standards of daycare certification. We hope to leave a footprint for the facility to grow and improve after our project is complete.”
“We know that through play, children learn vital problem-solving skills, gain a sense of accomplishment, and are introduced to the joy of exploration,” said Deborah Rohrman, director of Bethany. “This gift will ensure our children have a safe and welcoming place to explore and learn about nature and the world around them. It will also allow us to reach our goal of providing an excellent quality early childhood education for our young ones. Children who have the opportunity to learn outdoors develop a relationship with the world around them and are healthier throughout their lives.”
Community’s Serve 360° employee volunteerism initiative kicked off in 2011 as a major initiative that grew out of the network’s mission statement, which focuses on a lifelong commitment to the community-at-large. Volunteer events will be planned each year. Some of the projects already undertaken by Community’s volunteers include last year’s United Way Day of Caring project at IPS School #14, which provided basic clean-up and supplies to the school; the Super Bowl Legacy Project’s tree planting initiative; and the INShape Indiana Black & Minority Health Fair, where Community provided education on health conditions and free health screenings.
More than 1,700 volunteers will tackle 89 projects at ten schools, 46 nonprofit agencies and three child care centers throughout Central Indiana during this year’s Day of Caring.
For more information on Paths to Quality™ certification, visit http://www.childcareindiana.org
About Community Health Network
Ranked among the nation’s most integrated healthcare systems, Community Health Network is Central Indiana’s leader in providing convenient access to exceptional healthcare services, where and when patients need them—in hospitals, health pavilions and doctor’s offices, as well as workplaces, schools and homes. As a non-profit health system with over 200 sites of care and affiliates throughout Central Indiana, Community’s full continuum of care integrates hundreds of physicians, specialty and acute care hospitals, surgery centers, home care services, MedChecks, behavioral health and employer health services. To learn more, visit eCommunity.com or call 800-777-7775.