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Expanded Joplin Head Start in Full Swing After Federal Grant - KOAM TV 7

Expanded Joplin Head Start in Full Swing After Federal Grant

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JOPLIN, MISSOURI -

An early head start program in Joplin is in full swing after a recent expansion.

The Economic Security Corporation applied and received a six million dollar federal grant in March, helping families and daycare providers.

Thanks to the grant  the Joplin Head Start program has been able to double the amount of kids they have in their program this year, helping low income families.

"There was more needs or more children that needed to have a place to be, because we have a large number of families that work and still live below poverty" says Debbie Markman the Resource Development Manager.

98 percent of parents with kids in the program have been able to keep working and going to school.

"Parents who are working and going to school..there's no need for them to be on services like WIC or TANF. There's no need for those services in the community that's often where our tax dollars go" says Leisa Harnar, the Operations and Development Director. 

The grant also allows ESC to give financial aid to licensed child care providers like Morgan Prentice, for a college degree 

"I'm very grateful because it's very expensive and it's very over whelming when you are getting bills over bills to pay for all your books and all your schooling" she says. 

"A lot of early childhood centers require early childhood degrees which is a 4 year degree and costs many and so this gives us an opportunity to help with that so they get the different skills that they would need while they go to school" says Markman.

It's a grant that benefits the present and the future.

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