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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Arts & Culture, Children's Museums, Family Services

Mission: Habitot’s mission is to help the broad community of parents and caregivers raise curious, creative and confident children. Hands-on exhibits and programs focus exclusively on early childhood.

Programs: * Hands-on Exhibits Six permanent exhibits and one temporary exhibit encourage imagination, curiosity, problem-solving, social interaction, communication skills and parent-child connection. Exhibits include Waterworks, Little Town, Wind Tunnel, Infant-Toddler Garden. The current temporary exhibit is the Rocketship 80,000 visitors a year * Public Programs include three dozen multicultural events and performances throughout the year in music, art, dance, performance, storytelling and puppetry. Special Family Literacy Nights foster reading readiness and Child Safety events help prevent unintended accidents among young children. 10,000 participants a year * Art Programs include a drop-in Art Studio (included with admission) with changing daily activities, an Art Reach program taking arts to low income community preschools, and on-site focused art classes for children in ceramics, mixed media, and painting. 45,000 beneficiaries * Parent Education includes an in-museum Family Resource Center of books and other parenting references, 50 parenting classes a year on topics ranging from CPR and chokesaving to positive discipline strategies, and Parent-to-Parent brochures on parenting topics 5000 direct beneficiaries * Family Outreach Program designed to make Habitot's exhibits and programs available to a wide audience, especially low-income families and at-risk children. We offer free field trips to Head Start and state-supported preschools, free admission days, subsidized memberships, class scholarships, teen parent programs, book give-aways and organizational and library memberships for clients of social service agencies, hospital programs, homeless shelters, literacy programs, and teen parent programs. 8,329 direct beneficiaries

Community Stories

38 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have been taking my daughter to Habitot since she was 10 months old. She feels so at home in the space, and the real life installations have helped her learn so many things. The staff is so nurturing and remember her by name which makes her experiences there extra special. We love Habitot!

Review from Guidestar

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

My 13 month old loved our time at Habitot! And I loved all the educational exhibits. The veterinary clinic was a favorite since my son loves animals and he also enjoyed playing in the grocery store. I can't wait to take him back.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

Wonderful spot for my son. A safe place for freedom and exploration

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Habitot is welcoming and my daughter loves it! They change the activities on a regular basis, and my daughter is always engaged. We are so grateful to have a resource for our family.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

My son has been going to Habitot for three years and I have been impressed with Habitot from the beginning! My son loves to go there and I feel safe taking him to camps and other activities. My only wish is that it had the funds to expand so that it could meet the needs of more children and families in the area. The exhibits and activities are developmentally appropriate, and the staff are kind, trained, respectful and courteous! My son is five years old and he still loves going there!

I would love for Habitot to be able to expand, as I am confident they could then work with some elementary early grade students as well. Habitot is the best place for preschool children in Berkeley!

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

As a grandmother of two small children aged 2 and 4, Habitot is a lifesaver. The kids always have a great time. The space is always clean with lots of choices of activities from a train table, water fun, and of course, pretend food for shopping and cooking (a family favorite).

Previous Stories

Client Served

Rating: 5

One of the best Christmas gifts I received last year was my Grandparent's membership to Habitot. I think I enjoy it as much as my 3.5 year old grandson and 20 month old granddaughter. Habitot is always clean and friendly with lots of support staff providing fun activities and play opportunities for the kids. Its a safe, caring environment that I take advantage of frequently.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Habitot offers great programming to help support me as a parent aswell as being a great welcoming space for my child.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I'm a Vision Impairment Specialist with Blind Babies Foundation and I have found Habitot to be a perfect play space for the little ones I serve. Their exhibits are so thoughtful , experiential and age appropriate. The staff is always warm & welcoming.

Client Served

Rating: 5

My daughter loves this place and so do I. Some of her first words were "Go painting again?" The staff is amazing. They manage to keep the place clean and organized. After our first visit we became members.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I am a creativity expert. I write and lecture on creativity and the creative process and am one who helps other understand and embody creativity as a way of being. And I have a two year old daughter who by far is my biggest teacher. As children, all of us are naturally creative. We observe, we experiment, we aren't worried about what others think nor afraid of failure. As we more towards adulthood our natural creativity tends to take a back seat to our need to fit in. Some of this is good. But too much of this robs us of the best part of our being human, the ability to imagine, to wonder, to flow, and to love, all of which are core aspects of the experience of creating. Fortunately for Bay Area residents, Habitot present an inspiring, stimulating environment that is a hoot for kids and parents alike. Side by side, by watching my daughter break all the rules, using her hands instead of the paint brush, pouring water on her own shoe, and being unabashed in everything she does, I get to reclaim my own innate, full body creative potential. Habitot also is filled with pith reminders about the natural creativity of children and how to encourage their natural desire to explore and play. The staff is friendly and maintains the sense of compassion, even when we parents catch ourselves trying to get our child to do the project "the right way." I love going there and following my daughter around, knowing that she is safe and can watch and learn from other kids. I wish all cities has a place as inspirational and kid friendly as Habitot. Undoubtedly, with a strong sense of these young one's creative capacities firmly established, the world will indeed be a better place!