You’ve just sat down for a moment’s rest when your two- year-old starts crying. There’s a pile of dirty laundry to do and you’ve got to get to the grocery store or dinner will be in jeopardy. And somehow, you’ve got to squeeze in homework for your classes at West Virginia University.
Be rest assuredhelp is on the way. WVU ’s Child Development and Family Support Services (CDFSS), located on the first floor of the Purinton House, supports WVU student families by offering educational resources, programs and services.”Our goal is to provide students with increased support for their families so that they are better able to concentrate on what they came here forearning a degree,”said Director Leslie Haning.
The office serves as a central campus location for current or prospective WVU students seeking child care information. The office and adjacent family resource center offer a support system for student parents that can reduce family conflict, stress and risk factors as they pursue and complete their studies at the University.
Students are encouraged to take advantage of the numerous services provided by CDFSS , which include a lending library, where they can check out books, pamphlets or watch educational parenting videos in between classes.
If students are interested, they can schedule family consultations or pick up a comprehensive list of licensed child care centers in Monongalia County, as well as tips on finding the right child care provider. Nursing mothers can also enjoy the benefits and privacy of an on-site lactation room.
In addition, students can always find a campus calendar of events and area child care provider information (including their capacity sizes, operational hours, fees and waiting lists) posted on a bulletin board.
CDFSS will soon expand its services to include a babysitter list and the Student Child Care Assistance Program, a child care collaboration with the Student Recreation Center and Elementary Education, to support the various needs of student parents.
* CDFSS launches new Student Child Care Assistance Program (SCCAP)* CDFSS is happy to introduce a new pilot program, the Student Child Care Assistance Program (SCCAP), as a result of the Child Care Access Means Parents in School grant awarded from the U.S. Department of Education.
“The program would be similar to the WVU employee assistance program,”Haning said.”SCCAP will provide reimbursement to Pell Grant-eligible undergraduate students for a portion of their child care expenses while they attend school. Families would get to choose an eligible child care facility and get reimbursed for their child care expenses on a monthly basis.”
An informational session will be held at 12:30 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 3, in 101 Purinton House. Sign-ups will continue that day until 4 p.m. WVU Child Development and Family Support Services staff will be available to help students determine if they are eligible and assist them in the application/sign-up process. The initial application deadline is Friday, Dec. 12. After that, the program will be re-opened and applications accepted on a continual basis as long as funding is available.
The local Child Care Resource Center will also be available to inform and assist student parents in determining eligibility and applying for their state-funded child care assistance program. This is a separate and valuable financial assistance program for low-income families.
* CDFSS is now available online* At the click of a mouse, student parents can now access important, timely information about parenting, child care and more at the CDFSS Web site (http://www.sa.wvu.edu/childcare/). The site features current programs and has links to local, state and national websites. Students can also register to be included in an online mailing list, which informs families about topical meetings and program updates.