New child care center in Cedar Rapids aims to help with shortage

Published: Apr. 4, 2022 at 5:54 PM CDT
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) -Iowa has lost 33% of its child care options over the last five years, that’s according to the Governor’s office. Now a new child care center has opened in Cedar Rapids to help address the issue.

Fields of Fun Child Care opened Monday morning at the location that used to house Kids Inc. on the southwest side. The President of the center was one of many parents stunned by the sudden closure of Kids Inc. last summer. It’s what inspired her to do something to try and help.

”My son was here when it was Kids Inc. and so when they closed down it was a good hit on this area of the community,” said Taryn Krahmer.

Krahmer’s background is in business, but she wanted to help fill the child care gap she saw first hand as a mother of two. As a whole, the state is short 350,000 child care slots for children under 12. Fields of Fun can help fill up to 275 of those slots.

”I was so ecstatic to be able to help out. To be able to make more spots for children and not only spots, but great spots. We really feel like we’ve put a lot into this facility,” Krahmer explained.

And some who lost child care due to the Kids Inc. closure are already enrolled at Fields of Fun.

In total, 16 spots are filled with two additional babies on the way, and they’re being flooded with inquiries. Krahmer hopes the community will help support her effort to provide childcare for families which comes with balancing fair wages for employees with a fair price for parents.

”If there’s anyone out in the community whose willing to help and possibly give sponsors, we would really appreciate that because anything that we can get for help we can help have anybody whose in need for childcare,” she said.

According to the state the child care shortage causes more than half of Iowa parents to miss work. Governor Reynolds has awarded millions of dollars in child care grants because of this issue. Fields of Fun received more than $749,000 from the state to help get ready to open their doors.

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