ECA News

New teachers welcomed at Early Childhood Alliance

Asha Henderson

ECA’s Beacon Street Learning Center welcomes Kaitlynn Pierce and LaShon Stinson to the toddler classroom teaching staff, along with Asha Henderson as a substitute teacher.

Bridget Williams II recently joined ECA’s Downtown Learning Center as a substitute teacher.

Agency Celebrates 65 Years

Early Childhood Alliance (ECA) is celebrating 65 years of serving the community. Founded in October 1953, ECA began as a neighborhood assistance agency in Fort Wayne and soon child care for working parents. Today, the agency provides family engagement programs, free child care search assistance, early childhood education centers, training and coaching for child care providers, and a food program.

Last year, ECA impacted 32,000 children across 10 northern Indiana counties: Allen, DeKalb, Elkhart, Kosciusko, LaGrange, Marshall, Noble, St. Joseph, Steuben, and Whitley.

Teachers Join Early Childhood Alliance

Alexandrea Bischoff

New teachers at ECA’s Beacon Street Learning Center are: Alexandrea Bischoff and Breanna Kline, in preschool classrooms; and Chelsea Dempsey in the infant classroom.

ECA’s Downtown Learning Center also welcomed new teachers: Ann Hinen-Boyer in the infant/young pre-k classrooms; and Emma Pena, a substitute.

ECA Names New Financial Officer

Dave Allen

Dave Allen has joined the staff of Early Childhood Alliance (ECA) as Chief Financial Officer. He previously worked for BP in Houston, TX, retiring in 2015. Allen earned a bachelor’s degree and an MBA from Indiana University.

Dave Allen

Grads Celebrate

Graduation 2018

Walking down the aisle to traditional graduation music, more than 70 preschoolers were recognized during the celebration on August 1-2. The five- and six-year-olds are enrolled at ECA’s Beacon and Downtown Learning Centers.

Friends and families filled the auditorium, snapping pictures, in honor of their special little ones making the move to kindergarten later this month. Also recognized were the preschool teachers and Center managers for their hard work in preparing the children for success in school.

Both ECA Centers are now enrolling for all age groups. Contact by email by clicking here Leesha Culp or by phone at 260-758-0080.

Graduation 2018

Care Mobile visits Learning Center

Care Mobile

The Ronald McDonald Care Mobile pulled into Beacon Learning Center on August 6, ready to meet the needs of community children all day. The new Care Mobile of Ronald McDonald House Charities focuses on children 0-5 yrs. of age throughout the community. There is no charge for Care Mobile visits, and no appointments are needed.

The Care Mobile staff include a nurse practitioner, nurse and medical assistant providing well check-ups, immunizations, child care physicals, vision and hearing screenings, and more, especially for those families without insurance. One of the goals of the Care Mobile is to get families enrolled with a primary care physician, according to Kara Yackee, nurse practitioner.

The Care Mobile has been making site visits for about a month across northeast Indiana. As families become more familiar with it, there will be more sites scheduled.

Care Mobile

Teachers Join Early Childhood Alliance

Kristina Gaff

New teachers at ECA’s Beacon Street Learning Center are: Kristina Gaff, infant classroom; and Kelly Workman, toddler classroom. Allison Mason and Kayla Zelt have joined the Beacon staff as substitute teachers.

ECA’s Downtown Learning Center also welcomed new teachers: Marla Fauchier in the infant classroom; Nicole Dolan, substitute; and Sarah Rivera, summer program.

Funding Awarded to Child Care Providers

Children Sitting on Floor

Six early education programs in Steuben County have received quality improvement grants, totaling $10,000, thanks to funding support by Steuben County Community Foundation and Early Child Alliance (ECA), the Child Care Resource & Referral agency for Steuben County.

  • Heaven Sent Preschool and Daycare
  • Miss Roxy’s Daycare
  • Little Lambs Daycare Inc.
  • Little Farmers Child Care and Preschool
  • Agape Child Care Ministry
  • Kingdom Kids

Committed to increasing quality for children and families in Steuben County, the six programs will use the grants to help advance in Paths to QUALITYTM (Indiana’s quality rating and improvement system).

Children Sitting on Floor

Zoo Trip Thanks to PNC

Going on a lion hunt will become a reality for 45 preschool children and their teachers from Early Childhood Alliance (ECA), thanks to PNC and the Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo. The 3 ½ – 5-year-olds from ECA’s Downtown Learning Center visited the Zoo in July.

An advocate for early childhood education, PNC is funding the cost of transportation to the zoo as part of PNC’s Grow Up Great initiative that funds learning opportunities to help prepare children for success in school and life.

Spark a Future Event

Mix more than 150 guests with lively auction bidding, and you get a successful fundraiser for Early Childhood Alliance (ECA). Nearly $112,000 was raised at the annual Spark a Future event at Parkview Field. Featured auction items included furniture pieces custom painted by local artists, vacation getaways, sport packages, and custom jewelry.

Funds raised from the annual event support projects at ECA’s two Learning Centers in Fort Wayne along with family engagement programs for families across northern Indiana. ECA programs and services impact 32,000+ children and their families annually, building better futures for children.