TALITA SILVA: YMCA CHILDCARE GIVES ME ‘PEACE OF MIND’ WHILE I WORK
When Talita Silva’s daughter Alicia was having difficulty with remote learning, her first thought was the YMCA. Talita’s two daughters have flourished in Y childcare and afterschool care. Daughter Alicia is 7 and daughter Valentina is 3. Talita works full-time as a Licensed Nursing Assistant at Greenbriar Healthcare, a job she loves! When public schools moved to this new model, Alicia was struggling and Talita was having trouble helping her with schoolwork at home. Once she enrolled Alicia in the Educational Academy, Alicia is back to doing great with school work. This option took the pressure off Talita, a single mother.
The family’s Y story begins two years ago when the Early Education Center teachers welcomed Valentina to the Toddler One group. According to Child Care Director Elizabeth Witmer, “Valentina charmed everyone who met her.” Portugese is the family’s first language. The family moved from Brazil shortly before Valentina was born. Talita worked hard to learn English so she could secure a job quickly. Talita faced a lot of challenges as a single Mom. As hard as she tried to survive emotionally, she was ready to give up and was subsequently hospitalized. During this time, she had the support of her mother and Talita heard from several families in the Brazilian community how much they love the Merrimack Y’s Early Education Center for their young children’s care and education.
When she was released from the hospital, Talita felt a renewed determination to provide the best for her daughters. She found a job that offered training and called the Y to learn about opportunities for her children. Y Cares has helped the family with child care expenses.
Talita has felt the love from parents in the program who welcomed her warmly. The teachers in the Black Bear classroom at the Y rallied around the family and even helped with clothing for her daughters. “The teachers help me in many ways. I am so appreciative,” she said.A highlight of her day is when she gets photos and updates about her daughters through the Y’s Brightwheel software program. “I come to work knowing that my girls are well cared for at the Y. It warms my heart when I see them having fun and learning at the Y. They are doing great.”
Talita says she will forever be grateful for how the Y has changed the course of her family’s life and she will never forget the kindness of the teachers and other parents.
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