Stillman College in Tuscaloosa has been awarded a grant to develop the Stillman-Brown Memorial Child Care Program, an initiative to support child care services for more than 100 students who are parents on campus.
The child care program is a partnership between Stillman College and Brown Memorial Presbyterian Church, which was established by Stillman’s Founder, the Rev. Dr. Charles Stillman, in 1880. The church’s assembly and Sunday school area will be renovated to be used as a state-certified childcare facility.
Representatives from Stillman, the church and the Alabama Power Foundation, which is providing the grant, gathered recently on campus to share details about the initiative. The grant will provide resources for the renovations and the establishment of the center.
“Access to childcare for our students has been a major challenge for the campus,” said Cynthia Warrick, Stillman College president. “This important gift from the Alabama Power Foundation expresses their timely support and will make a major impact on our student parents’ ability to complete their degree.”
Stillman recently received a grant from the Aspen Institute to develop a plan to support the needs of student parents. The plan laid the groundwork for the development of the Stillman-Brown Memorial Child Care Program.
The college plans for the child care center to become licensed by the Child Care Services Division of the Alabama Department of Human Resources, which requires renovations and upgrades to the current space to meet requirements for child care. Additionally, the center will identify and contract with a licensed child care management company to oversee the day-to-day operations, record-keeping, and financial management of the center.
Stillman plans to seek supplemental grants to raise funds to subsidize the costs of child care for students who are also eligible for the state child care subsidy. The center will also facilitate opportunities for education and child development majors to volunteer and gain experiential learning.
“As a member of the business community, Alabama Power recognizes that child care continues to be a barrier for many families, which affects the development of our overall workforce,” said Jill Stork, Alabama Power Western Division vice president. “I am grateful for the support of the Alabama Power Foundation to Stillman College, and so appreciative to Dr. Warrick for having the vision of this center. I know this child care program will greatly impact the students on campus by ensuring they are better positioned for success in their educational journey.”
The child care center will begin phase one of its renovations this fall. Construction is projected to take about six months, with the goal that students will have use of the facility, following the required certifications, in fall 2024.
“We can’t thank Alabama Power Foundation enough for this support that will positively impact our campus and community,” Warrick said.
To learn more about the Alabama Power Foundation, visit powerofgood.com.
A version of this story originally appeared on the Stillman College website.