Mackinaw teen starts babysitting program amid school closures

Local News

MACKINAW, Ill. (WMBD) —  School closures nationwide amid the COVID-19 pandemic have left many parents concerned about childcare.

A Mackinaw teen is helping to answer those concerns by offering parents low-priced babysitting and tutoring services.

Garrett Forrest, a senior at Deer Creek-Mackinaw High School, said he found out about schools closing last Friday and thought designing a babysitting program would help ease the burden of parents who couldn’t afford to take off work.

“We would let people register online and request either a free or affordable tutor based on their financial situation,” Forrest said.

He said gathered a group of tutors and babysitters in the area who would work as volunteers or at affordable costs. Garrett said he wanted to make things as easy as possible for the community during these times.

“We have a lot of families out there who need to be working or have a parent that needs to keep that income coming in so they can put food on the table,” Forrest said. “This program allows those parents to continue receiving that income while also taking care of their children.”

Forrest posted a link on Facebook for people to register and he said the response has been amazing. However, he said he hopes more people register as he has plenty of help to go around.

“I have a lot more babysitters who are willing to volunteer or work at a very low cost to be able to help more families,” Forrest said.

He said he’ll offer the program as long as schools remain closed.

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