SARASOTA – The Florida Center for Early Childhood received a $50,000 grant from the Bishop-Parker Foundation to benefit its Early Childhood Court Program (ECC) in Manatee County.
The Florida Center’s ECC program is designed to expedite the process for young children who enter the welfare system, as they are in a critical phase of development and very vulnerable to trauma. Families enrolled in the program receive intensive therapy, guidance, and increased opportunities for visitation, helping the child and family to bond and begin healing.
Parents and caregivers in the ECC program work with a case manager, infant mental health therapist and family support specialist to achieve self-sufficiency. Funds from the Bishop Parker Foundation will go to purchase a transit van to ensure families can get to required appointments and meetings. A portion of the funding will also provide for additional therapy and counseling.
“The van is critical to the success of the ECC program as many of these families lack reliable transportation for the numerous visitations, medical appointments, therapy sessions, parenting classes and court proceedings they attend,” said Dr. Kristie Skoglund, CEO of The Florida Center. “We are grateful to the Bishop-Parker Foundation for helping us to support these struggling families.”
The Florida Center manages ECC locally in conjunction with the Safe Child Coalition and the 12th Judicial Circuit Court of Florida. Teams operate in Sarasota, Manatee, and Desoto counties. To learn more about the ECC, visit www.thefloridacenter.org/early-childhood-court/
About the Florida Center for Early Childhood
For more 40 years, The Florida Center for Early Childhood has been the leading provider of therapeutic services, early education and healthy development for young children in southwest Florida, offering a seamless delivery of services for the whole child and their family. Today, the agency is nationally recognized for its early childhood expertise in a variety of specialties. The Florida Center provides developmental therapies, mental health counseling, Starfish Academy preschool, the Healthy Families home-visiting program, a training institute for early childhood professionals and the state’s only Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders clinic. For more information, visit www.thefloridacenter.org or call 941-371-8820.