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Launched in 2014 by journalist Sean Baker, Med City Beat is an independent news source covering government, business and culture in Rochester, Minnesota.

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Church wants to be 'part of the solution' in addressing need for affordable child care

Church wants to be 'part of the solution' in addressing need for affordable child care

The congregation at Christ United Methodist Church in Rochester has come together to raise the funds for a new child care facility on site.

Thrive Child Care and Family Resource Center is set to open this fall in the lower level of the church. The center, which has been in the works for the past few years, will be licensed for 82 children ages six weeks through five years. Thrive will operate as an independent nonprofit separate from the church, and the programming will not be faith-based.

Tanya Goretzki, executive director of Thrive Child Care, said the center is committed to offering families access to high-quality child care regardless of their socio-economic status. She added that scholarships will be available to qualifying families to help offset the cost of care. 

"The church has a strong desire to be a part of the solution to the shortage of high-quality child care in Rochester," said Goretzki.

The project is being made possible through a capital campaign organized by the church. Goretzki said Thrive will focus on a "curriculum that teaches kindness and compassion which strengthens social and emotional skills and prepares our children to be caring members of the community."

In addition to child care, Thrive will offer support, education and resources to families through a resource center housed within the facility. The Family Resource Center will be available to parents whose children attend Thrive.

"Our goal is to provide families a place to learn about community resources, talk with experts in the field and connect with other families," said Goretzki. "Parent education and enrichment activities will be planned throughout the year to share information on a variety of topics and develop strong connections between our families. 

Thrive is set to open its doors on September 4. Registration is now under way. Families can enroll online at www.thrivefrc.org.

Thrive is the latest example of a community effort to address the growing demand for child care services. Aldrich Memorial Nursery School, Rochester’s oldest nursery school, recently broke ground on an expansion project that it hopes will help alleviate long waiting lists for enrollment.

Cover photo: Licensed / Canva

 

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