For the past 21 years, MountainStar Family Relief Nursery has been providing support for parents and children to help create safe and healthy home environments. In order to reach as many families as possible, the nonprofit is expanding into La Pine and also hiring new outreach coordinators in Prineville, Redmond and Madras. They are also working with the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs to determine the best services for their needs.
“We're thankful for the expansion of the organization because it means that we're serving more kids and families in our communities,” says Development Director Staley Micken. “We hope to reach those families who are often on the fringes of our community who don’t have access to resources or are experiencing other barriers.” Micken notes that she is also grateful that the community continues to recognize the important services that MountainStar provides and is stepping up to invest in those services alongside their amazing volunteers and donors.
“I'm also super thankful for the beautiful community of Bend that is open to supporting our whole region,” Executive Director Kara Tachikawa states. “I’m grateful for the communities that we serve as well, especially our smaller communities. They have this feeling of ‘How can we take care of each other?’ So, when MountainStar comes and explains the things that we can do and how we can make a difference for the youngest children, which is when it makes the most impact for the future course of their lives, everyone’s eyes just light up.”
Fortunately, MountainStar was able to raise most of the funding for their expansion into new communities. But with rising costs, they are constantly in need of additional support for this project, along with others they hope to accomplish in the future.
“We are always assessing to make sure that we're positioning ourselves to be reaching families and responding to the needs of our communities,” notes Micken.
Adds Tachikawa, “We’re finding more ways to actually reach all the kids in our community to make sure that every child has the best start possible.”
MountainStar is a nonprofit organization working directly with vulnerable families in an effort to keep children in Deschutes, Jefferson, and Crook Counties safe from abuse and neglect.