St. Lawrence Child Care Council, Northwest Tech students help recognize providers
Thursday, May 10, 2012 - 5:26 pm

OGDENSBURG -- Child care organizations and families across the nation will be joining together Friday to celebrate Provider Appreciation Day.

Locally, the St. Lawrence Child Care Council is leading the effort.

Earlier in the week, the St. Lawrence Child Care Council co-hosted a Pamper Your Provider event at the BOCES Northwest Tech, in cooperation with Mrs. Vicky Garrabrant’s junior and senior Cosmetology classes.

It was the third year the event has been offered for child care providers and program staff.

Two evenings of facials, pedicures and manicures were presented as a small token of our appreciation for everything they do to provide quality child care. Also participating was Dr. Michele Vondra-Harwood who provided hands-on massage therapy sessions Tuesday night.

Organizations that contributed to the event included the “Cosmo Girls” in Mrs. Garrabrants’ class, Price Chopper for donating paper products, Little Caesar’s Pizza for donating pizzas for door prizes and Dr. Michele Vondra- Harwood for donating her time and talents.

To learn more about Provider Appreciation Day, contact the St. Lawrence Child Care Council at 318 Ford St., Ogdensburg, NY 393-6474 or (800) 246-5352 or visit

It is estimated that over 11 million children under age 5 in the United States are in some type of child care every week. In St. Lawrence County our youngest children are cared for in a Family Day Care or Group Family Day Care home, a Day Care Center, Legally-Exempt Child Care or by family members. There are also hundreds of older children in our county cared for in School-Age Child Care programs before or after school.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo issued a proclamation designating May 11 as “Provider Appreciation Day” in New York State to acknowledge and express gratitude to child care providers, teachers and educators of young children and to commend the selfless dedication, commitment and compassion they demonstrate each and every day.

“Every day, child care providers and program staff care for our most precious resource ... our children,” says Bruce Stewart, Executive Director of the St. Lawrence Child Care Council. “Families depend on child care. Without adequate child care thousands of St. Lawrence County parents would not be able to work or continue their education? It takes an incredibly special person to work in the early childhood field and far too often these individuals go unrecognized,” says Stewart.

May 11 is a day everyone should recognize the hard work and dedication of those who work in the early childhood field and acknowledge their contributions to the children of St. Lawrence County, our state and this nation. This day offers an opportunity for parents to show their child care providers or center staff their appreciation.

Families can support their child care provider or program in a number of ways such as getting together with other families to create a special surprise, working with your child to create a special remembrance gift, purchasing materials or play equipment for the program, ask if your employer would offer discounts or promotions for your provider or program, offer your family day care provider a paid day off, or at least a hand written note to tell your child’s provider how much you appreciate everything they do for your child and family.