Non-profit organization working to open affordable daycare in downtown Wichita

KSN Digital Extra

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Downtown Daycare Center, which closed after 43 years of service, is working to open a new daycare center.

“When we closed in 2014 there were 100 kids left without daycare and it was quite a shock and quite a challenge for those families to find an alternative,” said Center City Academy Member Board of Directors Member, Rebecca Moore.

The new daycare center will be called Center City Academy. The non-profit has found land, which is under contract. It’s located at south Topeka and Orme, just south of Kellogg.

“There are 47,000 kids in Sedgwick County under the age of six potentially needing care,” said Moore. “Right now if all the centers and daycare are filled to capacity in Sedgwick County they can only serve 40% of those kids. So almost 25,000 kids are not being served by a formal type of daycare.”

Moore said the childcare center will help children from diverse socioeconomic backgrounds. The center will allow families to use a sliding fee scale based upon their income and how many people reside within their household. It will also care for infants six weeks old and children up to five years old.

“Childcare in Wichita, in Sedgwick County, runs about 9,000 to 13,000 a year in cost and we know that’s a strain not only on low-income families but in middle-income earners,” said Moore. “If you are making $50, $60,000 dollars a year, and paying 20% of that back in the form of childcare that’s a real strain.”

The organization is working to raise the remaining amount of money needed to purchase the land for the center, which is $300,000. Moore said they are scheduled to close on the land by December 31 and are taking donations.

“We do have tax credits available from Kansas Commerce Department, so any contribution over $250 the donor can receive a 50% rebate in the form of a tax credit that would come from the state of Kansas,” said Moore.

For more information or to donate go to centercityacademy.org or call (316)641-4153.

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