Community volunteers started the Crisis Nursery in 1989. Its mission is to prevent child abuse and neglect by providing emergency, temporary care, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, for children who may be at risk or whose parents are experencing some type of crisis.

Children ages birth through six years are cared for in a loving and nurturing homelike atmosphere free of charge by child care workers and loving volunteers. While they are at the Nursery, care is given to see that they participate in age-appropriate play and learning activities as well as socialization with other children and adults. Developmental and medical screenings can be provided in addition to referrals for education, psychological, medical, dental, food and clothing sources.

In addition to the emergency care of young children, an extensive series of support services is available to help a family through their crisis and try to break any pattern of abuse. Services provided by Crisis Nursery staff include in-home parent education classes, monthly parent support group meetings, and crisis counseling. Families receive follow-up home visits and advocacy and referrals to other needed services such as drug or alcohol abuse treatment, medical, food, clothing and shelter. As with the care of the children, the family support services are free.

Child abuse and neglect are most likely to occur when families are under stress and lack support. Children are brought to the Crisis Nursery for many reasons, but the most common are:

About the Nursery
 
  parental stress;
  risk of abuse to a child;
  a parent is struggling with alcohol or substance abuse;
  domestic violance is occurring in the home;
  a family is homeless or temporarily displaced from their home;
  a parent or sibling has a medical emergency;
  a family's financial or marital problems have accelerated;
  a working parent is suddenly without childcare for young children;
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