• Conservative Leadership in Senate District 8

What's the Family Support Center and the Crisis Nursery in Midvale?

- Well, good morning, everyone. This is Senator Brian Zehnder, and I am out visiting today. And I happened to come across Jeff Bird, who's the executive director with the Family Support Center. And I said, Jeff, I wanna hear more about this wonderful opportunity for service here in Midvale and in our community. Would you mind spending a little time with me, and telling me a little bit about what the Family Support Center is, and in particular the Crisis Nursery? 'Cause we wanna get this word out. 

- Yeah, yeah, you bet. The Family Support Center is a local non-profit. We're celebrating 41 years in Salt Lake County, and we have a number of programs. The one that you mentioned, Senator, the Crisis Nursery, we've got three of 'em in the Valley, so, we've got one in Sugar House, one in West Valley, and then the one we're in today, in Midvale. And it's really just a place for overwhelmed parents, stressed-out parents, parents that need a break, parents that don't have other resources in the community to help watch their kids, we will take them, free of charge, and watch them, to make sure that their kids are safe, they have a good place to be, and it's really a child abuse prevention mechanism. - So wait a minute, if you're really having a difficult time, as a parent, and you're really afraid for your children, because you're struggling so much, there's some place you can go? - Absolutely, there's three places you can go, so-- 

- Three places you can go? - Yeah. Completely free of charge. We encourage parents to drop them off. We'll take care of 'em, we feed 'em, we play with them, we make sure they're safe and healthy. - [Brian] And there's no cost involved? - No cost at all. - [Brian] So, tell me about this one here in Midvale. 

- Yeah, so, we're right on Center Street, 777 West Center Street. It's our second-longest location. We can hold up to 12 kids at a time, and again, it's just a place where parents, if they're struggling, if they've got a court obligation, if they've got nobody else to watch their kids, we'll take 'em, and make sure that they're safe. 

- [Brian] And this is open from? - Eight a.m. to eight p.m. at this location. 

- [Brian] Okay, so if I know someone, and I know that they're struggling, and they've got kids, what do I tell 'em? - Yeah, so, let 'em know. Go to familysupportcenter.org, or call our office at 801-955-9110. 

- [Brian] 955-9110. - Correct, and just say, "I'm interested in the Crisis Nursery, tell me more," and we'll go put you in touch with our program. - [Brian] Well, can we take a little tour, while we're here? 

- Absolutely. Let's show you around. - Let's just walk around a little bit here. This is just an incredible service for our community. - So, we've got a couple of kids with us today, Senator. They're having lunch. 

- They're having lunch. 

- We feed breakfast, lunch, and dinner to 'em, as well as a couple of snacks. We've got wonderful staff here that take care of 'em. - [Brian] We're not gonna show the kids for confidentiality, but these are delightful young ladies. I can see they're working on their corn, which is a good thing, and their, what was that? Hamburger, or something else? 

- It's sloppy joes. 

- [Brian] So, we've got a grandma here. Is that right, grandma? 

- Mm-hmm. - Is that right? And what does she do? - [Jeff] She's here to take care of the kids. 

- Take care of the kids, okay. - Yeah, and play with them. We can have a four-to-one kid ratio. 

- [Brian] Four-to-one kid ratio, okay. And these are a couple of the people that work here? - [Jeff] Yup, Sam and Dora. - [Brian] Sam and Dora, how long have you guys been with the Support Center? 

- Sorry, I can't hear you. - How long have you been here? 

- Oh, almost 15 years. 

- 15 years? 

- Yes. 

- [Brian] Why do you it? 

- Everything, like cook, clean, paperwork. - [Jeff] What do you love about working here, Dora? 

- I love, everything, stay with the kids, cook for the kids, you know. 

- You love giving back? - Oh yeah. 

- [Brian] You love being with the children, and seeing them protected, isn't that right? - Yes, mm-hmm. - [Brian] Well, let's see a play room, okay? Okay, so here we got a play room. 

- [Jeff] You have a little guy in here playing, but this is a place where the kids can just come, read books, play with toys, be themselves. - [Brian] Wow, this is great, look at this room! Okay, lots of fun things to do. And you said there's an upstairs? 

- [Jeff] Yup, there's an upstairs. 

- [Brian] Let's go see the upstairs. All right, now tell me about the upstairs. 

- [Jeff] So, like you mentioned, the hours here are eight a.m. to eighth p.m. 

- [Brian] Eight a.m. to eighth p.m., okay. 

- If there is an emergency or a crisis, and we need to open up to have kids overnight, we have the ability to do that. I'm trying to find a light switch. Here we go. So, this is a little boys' room, that if we've got kids overnight, they can just, you know, will be safe and warm. 

- [Brian] And you said that you had the Eagle Scouts, or the Cub Scouts-- 

- [Jeff] Eagle Scout Projects have painted the room to make it fun for the boys. And then we've got a girls' room over here. - [Brian] Wow! 

- [Jeff] That again, we can open up if-- 

- [Brian] Look at that, that's beautiful. Okay, and then there's a place for the, for the adults as well? This is great. So, how can people get involved if they wanna support this outreach? 

- Well, so, we rely on the good people of our community to help us. All the maintenance on our buildings, all the yard work, all the donations that we get, when you're child's in our care, we take care of everything, from the formula they drink, to diapers, and wipes, and all the cleaning supplies. We rely on donations, certainly, cash donations, or as well as product, or just if, there's a church group, a work group that wanna come and volunteer, we've got opportunities for 'em. 

- [Brian] Wow, and then, how again can they donate? What, is there a online-- 

- Yup, www.familysupportcenter.org. We've got, if you look on there, we've got wishlist of all the items that we need a lot of. Imagine having 12 kids at home, all day, every day, the messes that they make, so, a lot of cleaning supplies, diapers, wipes, blankets, formula, those types of things. 

- I tell you what, prevention of child abuse, it doesn't get any better than something like this. We all wanna do our share, but I tell you what, what a great service for our community. And there are so many people that don't know about something like this, so it's a great way to give back, it's a great way to get involved, and, it's better services for our community, and better families. 

- Absolutely, yeah. When kids are safe, that means, every day that we're keeping kids safe, is a good day, so, any time that somebody needs to use our service, we'd hope they'd call us and find us. 

- That's wonderful, well, thank you so much, for spending with me a few minutes. What a great service and a great way to give back to your community. Get involved, and if you need the help, there's some place here for ya, short term. Have a wonderful day, thank you, bye-bye.


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