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14 Reviews
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September 10, 2014

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Review from Guidestar
September 10, 2014

Our children went to the Youth Center when they were young for a few years after school and also enjoyed the summer camps as well. My husband and I were very appreciative and impressed by the staff, programs and overall facility. Would recommend this Center to anyone who looking to send their children to a safe and loving environment.

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Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Quite well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

August 12, 2013

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August 12, 2013

I am a current Novato Youth Center board member and a parent of a 3 year old child currently enrolled in the preschool. My son has been attending the Novato Youth Center since he was 16 months and has been in the pre-todddler and toddler rooms. We have had an amazing experience with the program. All of the teachers are wonderful and so caring with the kids. We really appreciate the communication we receive at the end of the day informing us of the activities and meals as well as how his day went. I highly recommend the Novato Youth Center to everyone who is looking for a safe and enriching place for their child.

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How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

January 16, 2013

I have been a Novato Youth Center Board member for 9 years, serving as Board President for 5 of those years. It is an amazing agency with a diverse group of services, all related to youth and supporting their journey to become successful adults. We touch their lives as we teach, guide, care, and counsel. We offer an array of programs to meet youth at their stage in life: child development, counseling, adolescent health & wellness, athletic programs, and collaborate to offer community-based prevention programs. We are proud of our long-standing partnership with the Novato Unified School District that enables us to co-serve services in an effective and efficient way on school campuses and throughout the community. All our services are delivered by highly qualified and educated staff. I am proud to be a part of the Center as we celebrate 36 years of service to the community.

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Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

January 14, 2013

Looking for child care is an investment of time. If you are looking for the one-stop shop, this is the place to be.

The Youth Center offers more ammenities than our local schools. They have 4 play structures. They have one for infants, one for toddlers, one for preschoolers, and one for
the school-aged program. They have their own full-sized gym for basketball, indoor soccer, martial arts, and roller skating. They have their own art room, their own game room, and their own library, complete with computers.

Homework is a priority for the older children, and there is dedicated homework time. They have staff and tutors to assist with homework to ensure that it is done correctly. I'm glad I don't have to spend much time helping my daughter with homework; it has usually been completed by the time I pick her up at 4:30 p.m.. Education is also important for the younger children; even my 2-year-old son has a curriculum, consisting of circle time, art for colors and exploring senses, music, dramatic play, story time for language development, outdoor time for exercise and gross motor development.

They have their own cafeteria with full cooking facilities and large refrigerator, which allows them to store nutritious, fresh fruits and vegetables. All meals and snacks are included in the fees, including snacks and formula for infants. Their food is also healthier than school lunches, often including fresh fruits and vegetables instead of processed foods. For the infants, they even wash the baby bottles! It is convenient to not worry about packing a lunch box every day; it's nice to know that I don't have to worry about missing forks, water bottles, etc..

Health and cleanliness is important. All the children wash their hands before meals. Children are dressed warmly for cold weather. In summer, the younger children are assisted with applying sunscreen. Sick policy is strictly enforced. Crib bedding, bibs, burp cloths, and pacifiers are washed daily by the staff; no need for parents to bring home laundry.

Summer field trips and movies are included in the fees, and usually all children are included.

Last, but most importantly, I feel comfortable leaving my children at the Novato Youth Center. Many of the staff members have worked at the Youth Center for more than 13 years. My first child attended the Youth Center in 2000. It is obvious that some of the staff are dedicated to their jobs; job turnover is low. The staff is willing to work with getting to know the individual needs of each child. My first child never slept in the crib; one dedicated worker often held her and snuggled her during much of her nap. As she got older, she gave up her naps, but rather than force her to sleep, yet another dedicated worker read to her, and she ended up being able to read independently before she entered kindergarten. My second child required a stroller ride to lull her to sleep; another dedicated worker kept the stroller going for nap. My third child needs frequent feedings due to his low weight; he was offered frequent bottles, frequent meals, variety of high-calorie foods, as the doctor ordered extra butter and whole milk to his foods. My third child loves his caregivers and cries when they leave their shift for the day. When I ask him, "Who takes care of you?" He doesn't say, "Mama." He instead names the workers at the child care. This is how you I know he's got a home away from home.

The only draw back is that there is no weekend care! We sometimes work weekends, and weekend care would be a huge bonus!

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Was your donation impactful?

Definitely

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

Definitely

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

Likely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

November 14, 2012

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November 14, 2012

Poor communication from staff to parents. Breakfast is supposed to be served till 9 am to the kids and there were instances where I would find out my child didnt eat, despite the fact that I had her at school before 9. This organization has a lot of staff whose children attend the program. The staff kids are clearly favored over the other children. I feel there was a conflict of interest when my child and one of the coordinator's of the youth program's daughter had a conflict and the person who handled it was the mom of the child my daughter wasn't getting along with. When I asked her about what happened, she didn't seem to take my concern seriously at all, and was more concerned about checking in with her older daughter about her school day. The lack of respect I received as a concerned parent was insulting. Like I said, her being involved as a staff, being that her daughter was involved, was very k appropriate. Lastly, my final issue that ultimately caused me to unenroll my child from the program was when my 5 year old was left at school without her scheduled ride picking her up. I had been trusting my child to be in the care of these people, yet they weren't dependable for a ride after school as it had been arranged. I didn't receive the slightest apology when the matter was brought to the staffs attention, till I informed them that my daughter would no longer be enrolled in their program. At that time, I received an apology that happened too late. This organization says they are about nurturing children, but its not the feel that was given.

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How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

A little

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Unlikely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Somewhat badly

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

June 28, 2010

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June 28, 2010

I am a parent of 2 children who attend the youth center. Both of my children started at NYC when they were only a few months old. What a difficult decision for a parent to make! But I found it was an amazing experience for me and my kids! My daughter (almost 5) just moved to their Kindergarten room. She is already sounding out and spelling simple words, doing math problems and learning how to get along with her peers. My son (not yet 3) is in the toddler room and can identify the entire alphabet and even write a few letters! He can recognize and spell the letters of his name. He's been doing that since he turned 2!! While I would like to take credit for my children's brilliance, I know that NYC has a huge part in these developments. Both of my children potty trained before they were 2 1/2 years old. NYC helped me with this awesome feat! The teachers are warm, kind and caring. They even do parent development so that parents can discuss our mutual concerns and issues that arise with our kids. I know the entire ECE staff as they really work together to make the center a knockout. When kids transition from one room to another, they work with the kids until they are ready to move to that next step. They really seem to be in tune with the child's needs. I could rave on, but I will close with the fact that the leadership of the NYC is unparalleled. From the Board of Directors to the Management Team, Administrative team and teachers. You will not find a childcare center in Novato with people who are more dedicated to their jobs, but more importantly to the children than at NYC. No wonder the school's motto is Success Starts Here! I am a believer and know my kids will be successful from the start they have gotten at NYC!

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

My children's development and successes in being in the ECE and PCIT counseling program.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Expand the buildings to create more room for childcare and generate more revenue for programs.

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

Their dedication to my children's well being and what wonderful children they have turned out to be under the care of NYC.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Kind, caring, helpful, flexible, dedicated.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Help the Community on a bigger scale than it does now. It does so many things so well I don't know that it would do more or better things...it would just be able to reach more people.

Ways to make it better...

I had more time to volunteer at the center to give back what they have given me.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

funding

One thing I'd also say is that...

In the 4 plus years my family has been at NYC, I have seen it grow and evolve. Yet, with all of its accomplishments, no one is content to stay static. They are always looking for ways to continue to get better.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

June 24, 2010

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Review from Guidestar
June 24, 2010

I have just completed 12 years on the Board of Directors of this incredible organization. I have been involved with other organizations, but NYC has amazing staff, leadership, and a very productive Board. Every time I entered the building I was aware of sounds coming from happy children, whether at play, doing art projects, learning, or playing sports. The outreach to Novato schools, couseling, tutoring, health care were all programs that the organization provides. I will miss my time on the Board, but I will always be involved with this amazing organization Larry Aronson. Former Board Member & President.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

First hand involvement for 12 years. In 2009 we were the most honored nonprofit in Marin County. Very impressive considering their are over 1500 nonprofits.

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When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

April 1, 2010

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Review from Guidestar
April 1, 2010

My children have thoroughly enjoyed the facility at NYC. The indoor soccer is a fabulous sport that is played at the Novato Youth Center. Our daughter loves the arts and crafts room; and our son loves the entertainment center. Both love the food that has been provided there. The faculty is committed, inspiring, and very kind. Our 5 year old daughter says, "It's the best place I've ever been." -- Toni Shroyer, Novato, Realtor - Pristine Properties

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the positive attitudes of the children served.

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If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

reach more children and expose them to a positive environment

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

April 1, 2010

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Review from Guidestar
April 1, 2010

This place is like an extended family. Not only does my daughter get stellar stimulation, love, and care but they offer parenting classes, they have family counseling, and they are all over the community! The staff and volunteers are so committed to helping our youth grow and learn. I'm grateful to have the Novato Youth Center in our community. Like their video says, "every community should have one!"

Photos

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

my child's development! She has great socialization skills, knows all her letters and even speaks some Spanish!

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

continue to build the skills of the staff and host more events.

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the warmth and love from the staff.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

amazing! Youth and adults, all ethnic backgrounds, smart and energetic.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

change the world!

Ways to make it better...

we had more parents involved as volunteers.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

funding for programs and lack of community awareness about how great it is.

One thing I'd also say is that...

Thank you, teachers and staff!

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

April 1, 2010

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Review from Guidestar
April 1, 2010

My son has been part of the Center for 3 1/2 years and his experience there has been amazing. The teachers (most of whom are parents themselves) care for the children as if they were their own and are incredibly supportive to parents, especially first-timers. My son has many new buddies and we too have made many new friends. It truly is a great place for youngsters to grow up and develop wonderful new skills.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

my sons interpersonal skills and also his development skills.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

be very proud!

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

The friendships and support I have gained from the teachers and other families and the reassurance that my son is in a safe, happy and healthy environment while we are both at work.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

kind, nuturing and put the children first ALWAYS!

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

be even more amazing!

Ways to make it better...

I could have spent more time at home with my son (he is happy where he is and that makes me happy!)

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

funding and community support.

One thing I'd also say is that...

I would highly recommend the Novato Youth Center to any family looking for a safe, friendly and nuturing preschool/daycare for their child.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

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