By Lauren LaFavre
Most parents work and many need after school care for their children. But statistics from the National Center for Children in Poverty show that almost 40 percent of South Dakota children live in low-income households. That makes paying for childcare very difficult if not impossible. Nonprofit childcare programs like Kidstop in Sioux Falls offer a solution.
Kidstop is a licensed, out of school time program located at First United Methodist Church near downtown Sioux Falls. This program has catered to underprivileged kids in the Pettigrew Heights area since 1989. Kidstop provides free after-school and summer time care for those in need. Educational activities, arts and crafts, snacks, and field trips are all provided. The employees are there to look after the children but also, according to Kidstop Executive Director Kassidi Smith, make a positive impact in the daily lives of the children. “The extra role modeling and supervision really helps the kids,” said Smith.
Smith says the program has grown tremendously since it first started 30 years ago, and she still has goals to expand further out for families beyond the Pettigrew Heights boundaries. Kidstop encourages volunteers, and depends heavily on donations such as crafts, games, and snacks. If you are looking to donate or volunteer today, contact Kassidi at (605) 336-3652.
Business Administration and Media Studies student Lauren LaFavre produced a video for Kidstop to help promote the organization.