Published January 1995 — Download PDF of the original newspaper column
Byrd's-Eye View By U.S. Senator Robert C. Byrd Caring for Our Children
With the increasing numbers of dual-income families, finding accessible, affordable, quality child care has become a priority concern for many people in our state and nation.
West Virginia is poised to play an important role in the national imperative to develop the best possible daytime care for our national treasures -- America's children.
Toward that end, I recently announced the award of a $700,000 federal grant - made possible by funding that I added to the Fiscal 1993 VA/HUD Appropriations Bill — for construction of a new child care center in Upshur County.
That facility, known as the Child Development Center of Central West Virginia, will replace the existing child care center on the campus of West Virginia Wesleyan College in Buckhannon, which currently occupies a temporary structure built during World War II.
The new facility, construction of which should be underway during the summer of 1995, will have space for the children of approximately 85 families, providing its young clients with a safe, modern environment.
The Child Development Center has a mission beyond its child care function, however — a mission that will touch children across our state.
Upon its completion, the new center will not only serve as a training site for child care providers, but professionals at the center also will assist individuals in establishing and improving child care throughout West Virginia.
Unquestionably, our children are our nation's most precious assets, and their health and well-being are of paramount concern. With rising numbers of children in a patchwork of child care situations, we must search for ways to ensure their happiness, education, and safety while not in the care of their parents.
I am excited about the evolution of the Child Development Center in Upshur County and the promise it holds for our children, and I look forward to the completion of its new facility and the growth of the new child-care initiative that will take root there.
January 4, 1995