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pay.  This is a much needed benefit to families living on a tight budget.  The average cost is anywhere from $100 to $175 weekly depending on the age of the child.  The child care center is located in two buildings next to each other with a total of 5,700 square feet.

Since the inception of Happy Days Child Care Center it has been managed by the same director.  Trusting relationships with parents have been formed and families refer others to the center.  Twelve full-time and two part-time employees also work at the center.

The executive director of Little Dixie Community Action Agency attributes the success of the child care center to having solid, hard working staff and to the partnerships they have formed and maintain.  Start up costs for the center was $45,000 which purchased the building and equipment.  The Happy Days Child Care Center has a 30% profit annually.

The Agricultural and Labor Program, Inc (ALPI) located in Winter Haven, Florida has provided child care services since 1970.  Winter Haven is located in central Florida and in 2000 was ranked the 17th most affordable place to live in the United States by the National Home Builders Association.  Many families continue to work in the citrus groves and farm fields.

In 1970 ALPI partnered with the Coca-Cola/Minute Maid Company and made available child care services to the children of migrant and seasonal workers when no other service providers were available to meet the needs of these families.  The child care services department has the responsibility of managing five directly operated child care centers.  The centers are located in Polk, Okeechobee, Indian River and St. Lucie counties.

Child care is available at times that best meet the needs of parents of children enrolled.  The centers are opened year round with eleven and one half hours of service per day.  In an attempt to meet the needs of families unable to secure or qualify for subsidized child care, a fee for service is available.  The center also provides parents with drop-in care on as needed basis.

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