First Bright Space in Alaska Opens
Bright Horizons’ employees from Alaska, Seattle, California, and Illinois partnered with Southcentral Foundation employees and families to raise the money to renovate the play yard and turn the nursery into a Bright Space. It had been 14 years since the nursery had been updated.
The Bright Space will serve women and their children living at the Southcentral Foundation’s Dena A Coy Residential Treatment Program in Anchorage for women who are experiencing problems with alcohol or drugs, or experiencing emotional and psychological issues.
“When mothers experience stress, children are affected,” said Monica Byrd, Dena A Coy Manager. “We provide a safe place for children to play, explore, and learn with other children.”
Bright Horizons Southcentral Foundation Employee Family Center and Center Director Jen Clark were instrumental in making the Bright Space happen.
“We wanted an agency partner that mirrored the culture make up of our Center,” says Jen about selecting the Dena A Coy program. “It was important to me to have a Bright Space that benefited the Alaska Native community.”
The team renovated both the nursery and an outside play space. DVP Cindy Hartzel and her husband, Regional Manager Ellen Sklanka and her husband, and Washington Center Directors Danielle Degges and Jamie Rhone joined Jen and her staff to help set up the spaces.
“I believe being involved in the fundraising and renovation of the space has brought our team closer together. Teachers are excited to continue the relationship with the agency,” says Jen. “The Foundation is one reason I joined Bright Horizons. I believe in the mission to impact the lives of children and families by volunteering in the community where we live and work.”