New Haven’s Farnam House is a second home to many children, offering after-school programs and basketball leagues.
However, with the state tightening its belt in order to balance its budget cuts, some of its programs are already being slashed, and so is the number of children it can serve.
The organization has been located in the Fair Haven neighborhood since the 1960s. It offers a state licensed pre-school, after-school program, a summer camp in Durham, and popular basketball leagues.
"I think what they can do is forget about whatever is going on, good or bad in their lives and come here and everything is like golden. You get to play ball, you get to hang around with kids,” said Jim Reynolds, who is a coach.
"We're operating on a bare bones staff, for all of the programs. We've had cuts in terms of our staffing, and the program operations, scheduling,” said Liz Gambardella, the co-executive director of the Farnam House.
Gambardella went to the Farnam House as a child, and said she learned last year the program would lose a $142,000 Positive Youth Development Initiative grant.
She said that is one of the biggest losses for the program.
Also impacted is the Care for Kids Program, which helps parents pay for pre-school or the after-school program, which costs $35 per week.
“If parents are already on the program, that's the extent of it. You can't attract any new families. It’s important because it supports working parents, helping to pay some of the fees which we have to charge now that we don't have the funding from the state,” Gambardella said.
Losing that money is a big hit, for a community center with a $750,000 budget. As a result, they're fundraising and looking for grants.
"The last thing we want to do is increase fees because parents have a difficult enough time paying the fee as minimal as they are,” Gambardella said.
To help raise some funds, they started a Friends of Farnam campaign, with the goal of raising $25,000.
To learn more, click here.
Copyright 2017 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.