Diane & Bruce Halle Foundation provides funding for new Head Start program

A view of children’s artwork at the new Mesa Head Start location. (submitted photo)

Child Crisis of Arizona has been granted a $50,000 grant, provided by The Diane & Bruce Halle Foundation, in an effort to support the organization’s expansion of its Early Head Start Program.

In April 2017, the program opened a new location on Country Club Drive in the city of Mesa, serving 112 children up to 3-years-old in center-based and home-based models, according to a press release.

“Sadly, in Maricopa County, few children receive the measurable and positive benefits of early education programs, an issue that is especially prevalent in lower-income level groups,” Andrew Bridge, director of the Diane & Bruce Halle Foundation said in the press release.

“This grant supports Child Crisis of Arizona’s endeavor to expand its Early Head Start Program, providing impactful educational services to a larger number of children and parents within our community.”

This expansion is comprised of two different programs to assist the needs of children and parents in one of seven pockets of poverty in Mesa wherein 47 to 68 percent live below the Federal Poverty Level.

The center-based program consists of six new classrooms offering a full day of care for up to 48 children with parents who are working or in school. In the home-based program, which accommodates 64 children, specially trained Child Crisis Arizona staff visit parents who have children at home to provide them with tools, support and guidance for their child’s development.

“We are incredibly grateful for the generous support from the Diane & Bruce Halle Foundation,” said Torrie Taj, chief executive officer of Child Crisis Arizona, in the press release. “This expansion has allowed for us to develop an early education program that is an essential mix of both center-based and home-based services, a combination that has been found to be most effective and creating positive outcomes for children and families.”

The Diane & Bruce Halle Foundation is a collaborative charitable resource, with areas of giving including scholarships, social justice, religion, arts and culture and more. Mr. and Mrs. Halle are Town of Paradise Valley residents.

Early Head Start is a federally funded, community-based program for low-income families. Children experience consistent, nurturing relationships and stable, ongoing routines while families receive guidance and connections to other community services, as needed.

According to the National Head Start Association, advantages to children that participate in Head Start and Early Head Start appear immediately, last a lifetime, and even have an effect on other generations, the press release stated.

In addition to the new Mesa program, Child Crisis Arizona also operates and Early Head Start Program in Phoenix, which has a five-star rating from First Things First, as well as a preschool program for children ages 3 to 5.

For more information about Child Crisis of Arizona’s early education services, visit https://childcrisisaz.org/what-we-do/education-and-tools-for-families/preschool-program/.

You are encouraged to leave relevant comments but engaging in personal attacks, threats, online bullying or commercial spam will not be allowed. All comments should remain within the bounds of fair play and civility. (You can disagree with others courteously, without being disagreeable.) Feel free to express yourself but keep an open mind toward finding value in what others say. To report abuse or spam, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box.