IWF extends a special thank you to our 2023 Grant Partner, Lutheran Services in Iowa, for writing this guest blog. LSI is driven by its mission to strengthen families in Iowa through a variety of programming, including Child Care Business Development. Not only does this program benefit refugee families who are in need of child care and income, but it also helps the entire community by creating child care solutions that strengthen Iowa’s workforce one family at a time. Thank you, LSI, for taking action against the child care crisis and many other challenges.
Sioux City is home to Lutheran Services in Iowa’s second resettlement office in the state. Since opening its doors, LSI has continued to lead the way to find and develop a program that creates culturally appropriate child care while also fitting within the varying schedules of area refugees and immigrants.
The staff at LSI would like to thank the Iowa Women’s Foundation for its continued support and dedication to helping improve the lives of Iowans.
Many of the parents that use LSI’s Child Care Business Development (CCBD) program work second and third-shift jobs and there is currently a lack of available child care at these non-traditional times. The program was founded in an effort to address a gap in appropriate child care options for refugee and immigrant families.
With CCBD, families address the desire to work with children, the need for child care at all times, and the need for linguistic and culturally appropriate care. Since 2012, Lutheran Services in Iowa has trained over 200 former refugees as child care providers in central Iowa—allowing 150+ adults to be active in Iowa’s workforce.
“Thanks to the Iowa Women’s Foundation, we are now able to expand this program into Sioux City. If we have more child care providers, it means more people can work or attend classes,” said Ruaa Khaleefa, LSI’s Child Care Business Supervisor. “This program helps provide a source of income, especially for moms that prefer to work from home. Many community members in immigrant and refugee households become child care providers as a means to help one another. It’s beneficial for everyone.”
This grant gifted by the Iowa Women’s Foundation will support an in-home child care provider training program for refugee and immigrant women in the Sioux City area.
LSI currently supports 50–70 child care providers annually to become registered or to maintain and grow their businesses and continues to support its community members and their goals.
If you know people in your community that are interested in joining our program in Sioux City or Des Moines, more information and contact details are provided in the graphic below