United Way Celebrates Week of the Young Child

8 months 2 days 1 hour ago Monday, April 16 2018 Apr 16, 2018 Monday, April 16, 2018 6:22:00 PM CDT April 16, 2018 in Continuous News
By: Alayna Chapie, KOMU 8 Reporter
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JEFFERSON CITY - All this week United Way and early childhood educators, students and child care professionals will celebrate the Week of the Young Child across America. About 10 years ago, United Way of Central Missouri started to celebrate the week as well.

United Way chose to get involved because of the early childhood initiative they support.

"We were trying to find a way to also encourage the community to really look at the needs of early childhood, so Week of the Young Child was a perfect way to celebrate our youngest learners," said Theresa Verslues, Vice President of United way of Central Missouri. 

United Way kicked off its week at Show Me Childcare Center Monday morning, with the ribbon cutting. The week will include several events across Jefferson City.

Julie Schmitz, director of the center, said the kickoff was really exciting for the kids.

"It was a great opportunity to engage and encourage the kids as part of the program," said Schmitz.

According to Schmitz this is the first year Show Me Childcare Center has joined together with United Way. They chose to get involved because of a conscious discipline educational training they took part it. Conscious discipline is a way to teach self regulation through social and emotional experiences and building relationships with different people. 

"I think education to the community is key to making conscious discipline successful and to emphasize the value of all the young learners through extended activities in the community and the opportunities that United Way offers for onsite opportunities. Just seemed like it was a good fit," said Schmitz. 

Some events this week include: Field Day at Southwest Early Childhood Center and a Young Carnival at Memorial Park Pavilion. Also, Missouri River Regional Library will come out to some child care centers to read to the children. The University of Missouri Extension will come out to different childcare centers and talk about the importance of nutrition. Other events will focus on the importance of physical education and address sugar intake. 

For more information about the Week of the Young Child, go to the United Way's Facebook page. 

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