Ada’s newest nonprofit, Hope Haven Crisis Nursery, opened Monday at 319 E. 13th St. in Ada. Organizers intend to provide child care to those in need.
“We are a safe place for families that may not have family and friends,” said Gentry Fisher, founder of the nursery. “Whether they’re moving to Ada and starting over, or have left a relationship and are starting over and may not have family here but need to work or go to Drug Court classes or counseling, or just need a break if they’re suffering from any mental illness.
“We know that a lot of people don’t have safe family and friends, and sometimes kids suffer when life gets hard, so we want to be a relief to families and offer a safe place where kids can come and have fun. We don’t want it to feel like a center. We want it to feel like a home.”
The nursery is mostly focused on offering evening care. Hope Haven is a volunteer-run organization.
“Our volunteers,” Fisher added, “are ladies 16 and older who are background checked. Right now we’re covering evenings because that is a time that more volunteers are available, and it’s when day cares aren’t open. We’d like to build up to have more hours, but we just started this week.”
Fisher rents the building, a home with three bedrooms converted to provide child care. Rent and the household bills are paid through donations.
“The community’s done a great job,” Fisher said. “A lot of what was already here was donated. We had to buy a couple of things, but we have an abundance of donated items. That’s the dream, because we want to be able to send families away with more than they came with. We hope to send each child home with some clothes and some books or a toy.”
Fisher’s experience has taught her what to expect when it comes to her clients’ real-world needs.
“I just know that life gets hard,” she said. “I started as a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) in Pontotoc County in 2015, and through that I’ve gotten to see that life can feel hopeless at times, especially when you feel like there’s no help. When I saw that a crisis nursery opened in Oklahoma City, the concept was new to me. After being at CASA, I felt our community could use a place like this.”
According to their web site, www.hopehavenok.org, “Hope Haven Crisis Nursery is committed to protecting children by providing local families with short-term care for children, birth to 5 years old, whose parents or guardians are in distress or crisis such as domestic violence, homelessness, joblessness, medical situations, mental health needs, and more. By providing a safe home for children, we offer parents availability to address their situation while also providing resources and information for other assistance. Our services are free, confidential, and voluntary.”
For more information, call 580-560-7602 or send an email to email@example.com.