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Governor Announces Award of $14.4 Million to Restore Social Services Block Grants for Childcare Programs

From: Office of the Governor    Filed 6/6/06  GCN

Governor Haley Barbour today announced the Mississippi Department of Human Services Office for Children and Youth's award of Social Services Block Grant funds of more than $14.4 million to Mississippi State University (MSU) Early Childhood Institute and MSU Cooperative Extension Service. The grant will be used to recover and restore childcare programs damaged by Hurricane Katrina.

"It is an immediate concern of parents to have a safe and healthy environment for the care of their children," Governor Barbour said.  "These parents cannot successfully return to work or focus on work issues when there is no child care available. Therefore, there is a critical need to restore child care services within these counties hardest hit by Hurricane Katrina."

The MSU Early Childhood Institute will use the grant to reconstruct a childcare facility, restore playgrounds, provide age appropriate educational materials, and provide training to licensed and exempt facilities in damaged areas by April 2007. 

The MSU Cooperative Extension Service, through its MSU Nurturing Homes Initiative, will work to restore and re-establish childcare services for in-home child care businesses to the pre-Hurricane Katrina care level.

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