Hilty Home offering childcare services. (photo submitted)
Hilty Home offering childcare services. (photo submitted)

PANDORA — As all local organizations have, the Hilty Preschool and Childcare Center in Pandora has had to reinvent itself to provide needed services to the community during these unprecedented times. One particularly difficult change was when the Governor recently ordered visitation be restricted to assisted living and nursing home residents. As both the Hilty Home residents and Hilty Preschool and Child Care children enjoy daily interaction through an active Intergenerational Program, this was unthinkable. Despite this challenge, the kids were up to brightening their resident friends’ days by decorating their patios with some sidewalk chalk accompanied by smiles and dancing.

More recently, the Governor ordered that all daycare centers be closed, and that the only daycare centers that should remain open are those established as Temporary Pandemic Child Care Centers. This is an effort to reduce the risk of community spread through children and to support essential health care workers. Healthcare workers, including clinicians, nurses, and other support staff, will be given priority access to childcare at these centers. Hilty Preschool and Childcare has been following recent developments and has been prepared for this change in course. An application to become a Temporary Pandemic Child Care Center was quickly submitted and has already been approved.

Currently, the center is planning on closing normal operations as of Tuesday, March 24, and re-opening as a TPCC Center on Thursday, March 26. This program will allow for essential workers to enroll their children, so they are able to continue to work and provide essential services to the community.

“Essential workers” is defined in the Ohio Department of Health “Stay at Home” order dated March 22, 2020, and currently those in the following professions will be given top priority:

• Hospital and clinic staff

• Dentists

• Pharmacy staff

• Nursing home, elder care, and home health care workers

• Psychologists

• Psychiatrists

• Mental health counselors

• Development disability aides

• First responders (police, fire & EMT)

• Direct service caseworkers (children services, public assistance and adult protective services)

If you have questions or would like to enroll your child, call 419-384-3220 or message the Hilty Preschool and Child Care Facebook page.