La Causa helps families get back on their feet

Posted at 7:48 PM, Jan 11, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-11 20:53:28-05

Inside this comfortable looking house is a happy place for children, like 3-year-old Kylie. 

She's enjoying breakfast here, and that gives her mom peace of mind. Kameko Simmons says it's a great relief.

Simmons has five children, lost both her parents at a young age and is a domestic violence survivor. 

She's one of 300 families who used La Causa's Crisis Nursery and Respite Center last year.

Simmons says the Center helped her be able to "go to interviews, get jobs and be able to get to appointments" that couldn't take her kids to.

Karl Schoendorf has been the director of the center for 20 years. He says families who go there are there because of stressful situations. Most are low-income, do not have the money or family to help with child care in emergency situations... whether it's for doctor's appointments, lost jobs or homeless.

President and CEO George Torres says the Center provides a safe haven that allows parents to bring their children to a place that "mimics grandma's house and really provides peace of mind while they go and take care of their business." 

Children can stay at the center for as long as three days, no questions asked and at no charge. 

Schoendorf says that if they can "keep a handful of kids out of the way of abuse, that's really important as an agency."

However, caring for kids takes supplies, and La Causa's Crisis Nursery uses diapers and formula every day.

Schoendorf says "budgeting for formula is hard. If they are hungry, got to feed them so we hand that out. So this project of yours over the years has been a big help." La Causa's Crisis Nursery says formula and larger sized diapers are always needed and the families appreciate the donations.