Child Care

FAIRMONT, Minn. – When a daycare in Fairmont was told its doors were closing, the city pulled together to offer a unique solution.

Quality daycare is difficult to find. So when Fairmont was faced with losing one of their options, the town banded together.

“We were given 30 days to get out so we immediately contacted the city and Linsey Preuss with Economic Development and they just started moving immediately to find us a new space to go,” Building Blocks co-owner Shea Ripley said.

“This is a major crisis for our community. There are 85 kids which may have 85 parents leave the workforce and that’s just not an option for us,” Fairmont Economic Development Coordinator Linsey Preuss said.

That’s where Lakeview Methodist Health Services came in.

“I have had previous experience in two different facilities with child daycare within the nursing home setting and it’s been a beautiful, beautiful combination so when Linsey came and told us the plight that Building Blocks was in knowing that we have staff members that have children in Building Blocks we thought we need to step up to the plate,” administrator of Lakeview Methodist Health Services Deb Barnes said.

In just one month, Building Blocks moved into the Lakeview Methodist Health Services building. Bringing together children as young as six weeks with residents in their 100’s.

“For the kids they haven’t lived much life and they have a lot of life in front of them and the residents can give them their wisdom and life experiences and I think that’s really important,” Ripley added.

Not only providing parents with ease of mind knowing their daycare needs are met but giving the residents, most of them great-grandparents a chance to see children grow up before their own eyes.

“The residents are with the kids outside, down the hall. They go to their rooms and sing happy birthday to the residents so it’s brought a whole new depth of joy and happiness to our residents,” Barnes said.

None of which would have been possible without the help of city inspectors, the Department of Health, Engineering and fire marshals.

“I feel on top of the world. Everything has been working out way better than we could have ever imagined. Lakeview has been so accommodating to make everything work and make this a perfect fit and it has been a perfect fit,” Ripley said.

– KEYC News 12