Salvation Army Peoria childcare committed to helping families

Local News

PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — From six weeks to six years old, the child care center at Peoria’s Salvation Army office is committed to helping children and parents.

“Our Salvation Army center here in Peoria is the longest continually ran child care center in Peoria, over 85 years,” said Major Heath Sells.

The center prepares children for kindergarten and accepts children from families of all financial backgrounds.

“We really focus on providing a stimulating learning environment for the children. Getting them ready for kindergarten,” said Child Care Director Tenisha Brooks. “[We’re] making that connection with the parents so home and school [are] bridged together.”

Brooks said many parents lately are seeking aid while they look for jobs.

“[These are] families who are really seeking job opportunities but could not afford childcare because they do not have a job,” Brooks said. “And with Childcare Connection making that switch, this will be a great time for parents who are actively looking for a job to find childcare.” 

Major Sells said some parents choose the center because they like the program, and others because they need the assistance that the Salvation Army provides.

“Our commitment is to continue to make sure that children are ready for kindergarten, both academically, socially, and working with our parents so that they know when they come here that their children have a safe place and an environment that will foster their continued development,” Major Sells said.

Rachael Cansino said she takes her child to the center every day before going to work as the Tri-County Social Services Director at the Salvation Army office.

“So I was trying to really find a good childcare center for him, and it was really difficult,” she said. “Upon accepting my position here at the Salvation Army, I was so excited that they had a childcare center.” 

Cansino said the program has been wonderful for her family.

“It’s been so helpful that we are backing each other up,” she said.

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