A family child care provider for 6 years, Laurie Sanders of Los Angeles, CA, has "a passion for kids [and] wanted to see them in a safe environment."
Sanders, on providing good early care: "Have a daily schedule that's consistent. It helps children know what comes next and easily transition from one activity to the next."
Sanders is a former welfare recipient whose daughter got hurt while in the care of a relative. She decided to open her own child care business to keep her kids safe, and to provide that same level of care for other people's children, as well.
Right now, Sanders cares for 14 children, all long-term clients, from five months to nine years of age. Eight of those children are supported by Stage 3 funding, which could soon be lost. This would be a blow to both Sanders' business and the families who depend on it.
Sanders' advice for new parents: "Spend quality time with them, even for an hour or two. That Mommy and Me time. Kids really do need that. And I tell them to always praise their children."
"All of my parents are single mothers," Sanders said. "All of their problems so far that I've noticed are financial and transportation issues. Providing food is often an issue."
To make up for the food their mothers can't always afford, Sanders partners with the Korean American Food Service program. Depending on need and their parents' work schedules, she provides breakfast, two snacks, lunch, and occasionally dinner, for children who are with her between 8-13 hours per day.
Sanders attended the October 26th rally in Long Beach to ask Governor Schwarzenegger to extend Stage 3 child care funding. The cuts have been halted by a judge through this week.
Photo, from left to right: Laurie Sanders, Elysha Johnson and Destiny Jackson at the Long Beach rally.