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Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany


Readiness Enabler for Operational Forces  •
Youth program offers several options

By Cpl. Denyelle D. Spillane | | June 5, 2003

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Whether it's a chance to get away for a night or have a clear mind while at work, Marine Corps Community Services' Marine Corps Family Team Building Program has the solutions for most parents' childcare needs.

"Parents have the opportunity to go to work or go to dinner and a movie without worrying about their child's safety," Lynn Willis, MCFTB branch head said. "We are here to assist active duty and Department of Defense civilian employees to help with mission readiness, and quality of life."

MCFTB operates the Child/Youth and Teen Programs, which provides a wide variety of program options based on parents needs.

The Family Childcare Home Program is for families who prefer in-home care instead of center care or who require childcare outside of normal work hours. For example, a single Marine who receives Temporary Additional Duty orders or those parents who need weekend care or take night classes may use this program.

MCTFB certifies providers to offer childcare from their home for children ages 6 weeks to 12-years-old. Full, part-time and occasional care is also available.

"All providers are spouses of active duty or retired members who are certified," Alison Fujimoto, supplemental program and service resource and referral manager said, MCFTB. "The providers are subject to monthly inspections to ensure children's safety,"

For parents who prefer center care, the Child Development Center provides full, part-time and before and after school care for children ages 6 weeks to 12 years. During the summer, a full-time school program is available for children in kindergarten to age 12.

According to Willis, the program offers a variety of activities such as swimming, field trips, bowling and community projects. Professional instruction is also provided to the children in art, drama, foreign language and music.

The Youth and Teen Activities Program is an affiliate of the Boys and Girls Club and is designed for ages 9 to 18. Willis also explained that many clubs in the program are designed to build character, provide health education, develop leadership skills and life skills. Classes
on substance abuse awareness and prevention, and physical fitness are also available to teenagers.

From 4 p.m. to 5 p.m., Mondays-Thursdays the program provides Power Hour designed to assist Youth/Teens with homework. Volunteers are always welcome to provide tutoring in core subjects such as math, English, and science.

In addition to structured classes, "The youth also have the opportunity to meet other teenagers and enjoy recreational activities to include video games, field trips, and pool table tournaments, all in a supervised environment," Willis said. 

"CY&T programs also provide supplemental programs and services to base organizations requiring professional childcare services outside of the CDC," Willis said. "Parents are 'on-site' for scheduled events including bible study, Chapel services and various types of organization trainings."

MCFTB doesn't only design programs for children. They also offer programs for parents. Parent's night out is designed for mothers and fathers to have time away from their children. They may choose to catch up around the house, go shopping or spend time alone. CDC provides evening childcare monthly so parents don't have to worry or struggle with the hassles of finding a qualified babysitter.

The Youth/Teen Center in conjunction with the CDC plans activities for late night fun open to youth/teens who don't want to go to the CDC but whose parents want to enjoy a night out.

"We strive to accommodate both the child's and the parent's needs," Fujimoto said. 

Willis also added that each Tuesday morning from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. spouses and their children are invited to attend Play Morning at the chapel.  This program provides spouses and their children an opportunity to get acquainted while participating in structured and non-structured activities. 

For questions, enrollment dates, volunteer or eligibility information, call the CY&T Center at 639-5199.


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