Who We AreOur Story
In 1980 Sr. Paulita Walters opened the doors to the Readiness Center with just a $2,000 grant. Her vision: to provide a safe and nurturing environment where pre-school children could learn the tools necessary to help them succeed in school and to provide structured parent-child time to introduce the need for parental involvement in children's education. Since then, the Readiness Center has expanded to help children of many ages continue to refine their skills and have a safe place in which to learn and succeed. However, the center has never strayed from its core purpose of providing early childhood education and family nurturing.
To provide educational programs for low-income parents and their pre-school through grade ﬁve children with the goal of fostering self-esteem in both parents and children by offering a variety of educational opportunities in a setting wherein they can be successful
For nearly thirty years, the Readiness Center has served the Benton Harbor community and increased its programming to fulfill the changing needs of the children and their parents. The Readiness Center has grown to include an after-school component for first through sixth graders called CityKids and the 50/50 Teen work/mentor program. The longevity of the programs and the success of the students is a tribute to the effectiveness of the Readiness Center.
Over the past 28 years, the Readiness Center has prepared numerous children for their entry into the formal educational system. Providing children with the curiosity, confidence and tools necessary to succeed in school, the Readiness Center has become a model for early childhood education. The growth of the program and the success of its students are just some of the benefits that the Readiness Center offers. Encouraging parental interaction and involvement as well as personal development for the parents of students has always been a central part of the Readiness Center. This core component helps build a stronger community through the development and encouragement of both the children and their parents. From the beginning, we have reached nearly 1,000 children and their families. By visiting the honor roll you will find just a few of their success stories.