Island Friends Roatan's Day Care center serves low income children with the perfect blend of educational quality and emotional support. Bill and Judy Allred have hired locals, provided extraordinary professional development, and supported their efforts with equipment, books, games and other necessary instructional materials. In addition to this project, Island Friends serves as a clearinghouse for volunteer organizations on the island, and supports many of them with materials and funds.
For many years the Roatan Daycare and Learning Center has been providing the Roatan community with a reliable, safe, caring, and secure haven. Not only do they provide a piece of mind for parents, it is an environment where daily learning is happening. As a teacher of more than 15 years, I am amazed every time I visit the Center. The children are always engaged in something. It might be a lesson that is being taught, an art project, or even just eating their lunch politely. The social and leaning skills that these children are acquiring are critical to their learning years to come. I can't help but think how lucky the children are that have the opportunity to attend the RDLC.
I am a teacher in the United States and upon visiting Roatan recently was looking forward to visit the DCC. I arrived unannounced, hoping that it was an OK time to stop by. I was warmly welcomed by one of the staff members and shown around. I was so overwhelmed at the serenity I felt --all the kids were quietly sitting in a circle playing some sort of Bingo. They stopped and turned their heads and gave me a HUGE smile. It was obvious that they were happy and were proud to show me their cooperation and teamwork. It literally brought tears to my eyes! What a special gift these children have been given. I had visited the DCC in the past and the positive changes in the behavior of these kids was absolutely amazing! I sure hope that the success of this wonderful establishment continues. Great work to all of you involved! Liz B.
Review from Guidestar
The Roatan Daycare Center has served local families for many years now. It has been a consistant and persistent vehicle for working parents who are needing a loving and educational environment for their children. The staff and directors all work very hard and the atmosphere is always bright and positive. I have the utmost respect for all involved in this valuable Roatan resource!!
Where do I start? A couple of caring souls, big hope, some money and unending supporters began providing care to local children some years ago. That 'little engine that could' is still alive and well, providing love, safety, food, education and a life-long example of how a few can help the many. Parents can work to provide a better life for their family while their children are nurtured and educated on a daily basis in a bright and enriching environment. The great staff and the big hearts of people behind the scenes continue to keep the doors open, although it is a constant struggle financially. I have great respect for them!
Roatan Daycare Center in Coxen Hole (run by the NGO Island Friends) provides a much needed service to families and young children. But this is really more than a "daycare." It provides a stimulating nurturing environment for children who are devoid of such at home. This really gives these kids a jump start to success in school. They learn basic pre-K skills as well as the socialization skills needed for later success. I cannot emphasize how little of this sort of stimulation is available for the average pre-schooler on our island. This is one charity where I know every cent goes directly to the kids!
The Roatan Day Care Center provides a nurturing learning environment for kids who live in an environment devoid of intellectual stimulation as well as oppressive poverty. I take care of sick children for a living. But I believe that in many ways the long term effect of this day care environment is more important than the medical care. I can treat a fever or sore throat and provide amelioration of some diseases in the short term. But the gift of learning is a life long treasure that we give these kids for the next 60,70, 80 years. The Allreds have carried this project for the last 7 years with devotion and hands on hard work. We all owe them a big congratulations and thank you!
Being a teacher myself for many years, I truly enjoy my visits to the Day Care Center and am always so struck by the calmness and organization that goes on. The children are with their specific teachers and are fully engaged in the learning process. I always need to take a second look and remind myself these are young children that are behaving so well and showing great behavior and skills far superior than a lot of the older kids that I work with.
The accomplishments and social interactions that are learned at the Day Care Center are exactly what is needed for children to be confident and flourish in the learning years to come. Thanks to you all that are helping this process be so successful in so many ways. You're doing a fantastic job!