Bye-Bye Buggy for Kids' Kampus

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Kids' Kampus recently received a grant from the Clayton County Foundation for the Future to purchase a six-seat "Bye-Bye Buggy." From left are Stanley Walke, Austen Brown and Jackson Meyer. (Photo submitted)

By Caroline Rosacker

Quality childcare is important for the healthy development of children. Research has found that day care providers are an important component to the cognitive, language and social development of young children. They are also a source of consistent, emotional, supportive care, which is very beneficial to children and families.

Kids' Kampus

In 1992 the Guttenberg Municipal Hospital & Clinics (GMHC) received a Rural Health Transition Grant to develop a licensed day care and preschool program.  The hospital believed childcare to be a needed service within the community, as well as an important component in recruiting and maintaining qualified health care staff. Kids’ Kampus, located at 210 Main Street, Guttenberg has been providing high quality, dependable childcare services since that time. 

In 2006, GMHC – Kids’ Kampus transitioned to a community-based childcare program now known as Kids’ Kampus Community Childcare. Located directly west of the hospital, Kids’ Kampus continues to offer high-quality early preschool and day care services to families in the surrounding area. Kids Kampus is licensed by the State of Iowa and maintains a Level Four Quality Rating System (QRS) accreditation. The childcare center was recently awarded a grant from the Clayton County Foundation for the Future to purchase a six-seat "Bye-Bye Buggy."

Raynelle Burr, longtime dedicated employee, is now the director at Kids' Kampus. She commented, "I took over the position from Cori Hundt the first of March when she, her husband and children relocated to Florida to be closer to her family."

Kids Kampus participates in CACFP (Child and Adult Care Food Program) and follows their guidelines for healthy meal preparation. "Joanne Wilker is our cook and prepares all of our delicious, nutritious meals and snacks. Before COVID-19, meals were served family style but now staff does the serving and children are allowed to ask for more," she said.

Kids’ Kampus is a non-profit community-based childcare program operated by an independent board of directors. Their early childhood program is designed to promote a child’s intellectual, social, emotional, and physical growth. 

Kids' Kampus preschool provides a learning environment appropriate to age and individual needs, allowing children to develop at their own pace. The program promotes each child's socialization skills, fosters independence, provides a flexible safe environment, and encourages good health and nutritional habits.

The day care provider encourages creative self-expression through music, dance and art; development of manipulative skills and motor coordination through art materials, puzzles, blocks, bikes and playground equipment; increased knowledge through field trips, and cooking and science activities; development of concepts through exposure to materials which stimulate basic awareness; language growth skills through stories, songs, and dramatic play and relaxation through quiet activities. 

"We do activities with all the children from the youngest on up that promote their intellectual, social, emotional and physical growth," Burr noted. "Whether it be tummy time for the babies, helping the infants learn to walk, or teaching dance moves to the older children. Kids' Kampus philosophy is, 'The Kids Come First.' We nurture the whole child. We do lots of reading activities at all age levels and promote positive social interaction opportunities as well."  

Kids' Kampus has maintained a strong presence in the community. "Prior to COVID-19 we took the older children to the pool, parks and on field trips. We also took them to events in the community, such as ice cream at the banks. We have always enjoyed participating in story hour at the Guttenberg Public Library. This year they are providing the program to us virtually, through a Facebook broadcast, and providing us with the materials we need to complete the projects," said the director. 

Many extra precautions are being made to protect the children and their families from COVID-19. She explained. "We have limited access to the building to staff and children only.  Temperatures are taken at the door upon arrival and at departure so we can watch for any variations.  Any child or staff with a temperature greater than 100.4 is sent home. We have always followed very strict hand-washing guidelines and continue to do so. Toys and surfaces are cleaned and sanitized more frequently, and we have suspended family-style self-serve at meal times."

For additional information contact Kids' Kampus at 563-252-3934, or find them on Facebook.

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