Scraping tools and paint rollers have been in high gear at Sunshine Day Care lately. If you stop in, what you’ll witness is a group of like-minded folks working tirelessly to get the center back open for Adair County children to come in and be loved.
It’s likely that if she were here today, “Grandma Ina” would be proud of her granddaughter Katelyn Brashear, and all of the other volunteers and contributors, have done to give the day care, at 110 NE Grant St. in Greenfield, a face lift.
Ina Garside was director of Sunshine for 30 years. She passed away in August 2015 at the age of 68. For her love for them and their love for her, the children all called her “Grandma Ina.”
Brashear hopes the daycare that opened in 1995 can continue serving children for many years to come. She hopes to bring her children when their usual childcare provider is unavailable. Brashear was recently elected president of the Sunshine board.
In mid-January, the day care board announced a temporary closure. The center had been working for months to try to reorganize. Necessary improvements to offer quality childcare weren’t happening.
At the time of that announcement, the day care had no staff to serve children with. Greenfield United Methodist Church opened its doors with a volunteer-based childcare service in the interim that was able to serve families who weren’t able to find alternate solutions.
Back at Sunshine last Friday, a group of board members could be found on ladders using paint rollers to make all of the walls and ceilings of Sunshine one color so that they’re more simple to touch up in the future.
When that’s complete, the entire building will receive a deep clean. Plastic over flooring and other elements will come up. New appliances are on their way for the kitchen. Toys that were temporarily taken to the basement will be cleaned, then brought back up so the main room of the day care can be set back up.
A grand opening and ribbon cutting are scheduled for 4 p.m. Wednesday, March 8 with an open house to follow until 6 p.m. New staff and a new director the board has hired will be on hand for the community to meet at this event.
“Our board has all kind of upended our lives to do this,” Brashear said. “It’s still a mess, but I feel good about it.”
The board has a goal of getting around 30 kids back at the day care, which would be higher than what they were serving.
“Everybody’s goal is to get more families back who are invested,” Brashear said.
Many businesses and individuals have donated time, materials and resources to make a revitalized day care a reality for Greenfield. Nodaway Valley students have reached out and are working on projects that will benefit the center when it reopens. For all of that, board members are thankful.
“We hope to have a big turnout at our open house, especially since we’ve had so many people donate. I’m hoping they’ll come and see what their money went toward,” Brashear said. “I think the community is very interested in the improvement and what we are doing. People who have wanted to stop to see it while it’s still in the mess of things have said it looks really good.”