JOPLIN, MO -- Early Head Start Program Director Jeff Goldammer says last year 40 kids throughout southwest Missouri were helped through the program. Along with day care, children also receive health care, nutrition, child development, and disability services
Goldammer says the program helps parents continue to work, to make a better life for their family in the long term. "Our program philosophy is to give a hand up, not a hand out. These are all that are trying to work their way to self sufficiency."
But starting July 1st, the new budget will go into effect leaving families without the assistance. "We'll lose more than half of our families through these cuts." Goldammer explains. He says it could also force families who lose the services to place their children in substandard, or unlicensed care. "Anyone that's had to go to work, and worrying about what's happening with their child." He explains. "It puts the parents in a tough position."
The local child care economy could also take a financial hit. Goldammer says most of the programs $400,000 budget from 2011 went directly to small child care facilities. Now with that money gone, there will be more empty seats, which means less revenue.
The E.S.C. is currently in the process of contacting the child care providers, and families who will lose services. Officials with the program suggest contacting your congressman to help fix the issue in next years budget.
To find out more if you can help restore services to some of the families, you can find more information by clicking on the link below.