January 1, 2021

Iowa Growth Fund Graduates

First Children’s Finance is pleased to recognize seven Scott County child care and preschool centers that completed the Growth Fund Program in 2020. The Growth Fund Program offers business development services to a learning cohort of child care programs seeking to increase their capacity, quality and or financial sustainability. With the help of First Children’s Finance staff, each of the participating programs assessed their business operations, developed a business improvement plan, and received grant funds to help support the implementation of significant improvements and growth. The 2019-2020 Growth Fund Program was made possible with financial support of Scott County Kids and Iowa Department of Human Services.

The following child care and preschool centers completed the program:

  • Birdie’s Nest; NaRhea and Jason Salzbrenner, Owners/Director
  • Holy Family Teddy Bear Club; Cassandra Collum, Director
  • Scott County Family YMCA—Palmer Learning Center; Brent Ayers, Director
  • St. Mark Preschool; Rebecca Dankert, Director
  • St. Paul the Apostle Catholic School Child Care; Julie Morrison, Director
  • The Growing Tree Preschool and Daycare; Angie Ulloa, Director
  • Villa Maria Childcare Center; Michelle Ripperton, Director

As of June 30, 2020, achievements by the centers included: improved business functions, greater confidence in financial management, increased enrollment numbers, increased enrollment numbers for low-income families, additional outside funding secured, increased ratings in the Iowa Quality Rating System (QRS), and improved playground and classroom environments.