This archived article was written by: John Keetch
Ladies and gentlemen, I have a confession to make. Like many of the readers, I was a latch-key kid. For those of you who don’t know what that means, both my parents worked, so they gave me a key to the house, and told me to play videos games until they came home. Although this sounds like a gamer’s dream, Halo and Super Smash Bros. are no substitute for the loving care of a parent in the home, or even in a day care. However, my parents could not afford to put me in a day care. It is for children like me that ProCare was created.
ProCare is an affordable alternative to the traditional day care system. Run at schools across Carbon County, and with similar sister programs across the nation, ProCare is designed to provide a safe environment where children can socialize with other children their age. From the time school gets out until 6 p.m., the kids at ProCare read books, do. homework, play basketball, jump rope, make crafts and maybe, if everyone is really good, they make cotton candy.
Jeanie Burton, a student leader at the CEU SUN Center, CEU’s organization dedicated to providing service in Price and the surrounding area, volunteered at ProCare for the last two years. She says that she loves ProCare because of “the opportunity it provides me to watch the little kids grow and learn.”
Take Emily for example. When Emily started coming to ProCare, she had difficulty reading. Through many hours of reading and many moments of frustration, Emily’s reading ability improved, though she still doesn’t enjoy reading.
This is just one example. There are many others. While ProCare will never be a substitute for the nurturing of a parent, it is a safe environment, where friendships that will never be destroyed are created. All volunteers must pass a background check, ensuring that both the children and the volunteers are safe.
Anyone interested in volunteering at ProCare can come to the SUN Center, located on the second level of the JLSC, next to academic advising offices, Burton, or any of the SUN Center leaders. Service-Learning credit is available, so take advantage of this opportunity. Make a difference, one child at a time.