The Village of Hoffman Estates, in conjunction with School District 54, has been awarded the 2012 Illinois Governor’s Hometown Award for its Community Resource Centers. The Hometown Awards were presented to 30 groups from across the state during a ceremony Nov. 29 at the Executive Mansion in Springfield.
“The Governor’s Hometown Awards honor the efforts of 30 remarkable groups who have selflessly dedicated their time and efforts to making their communities a better place to live,” Governor Quinn said.
The goals of the resource centers are to provide meaningful programs and a beneficial link between government resources and the community in order to foster a safer and healthier environment.
The original resource center opened in 2000 in the Salem Ridge Apartments in Hoffman Estates. However, the need for services quickly grew. When a new police station opened in 2009, the village included space for another community resource center.
“District 54 is honored to partner with the Village of Hoffman Estates to provide Community Resource Centers for our families,” District 54 Early Childhood Director Jen Mursu said. “By opening its buildings to us, the village has supported District 54 in its efforts to bring preschool services and parent education to families, thereby helping our students prepare for kindergarten and beyond.”
School District 54 employs child and family educators who provide classes and workshops to promote literacy for children from birth to age 5 at District 54 schools, as well as at the resource centers. They also perform home visits for the participants in the program. The educators are a multilingual group speaking English, Spanish, Polish and some Indian dialects, enabling direct assistance to the variety of participants at the CRCs.
The CRCs’ services include early childhood literacy education, childcare assistance, student education, finance education, local transportation, English as a second language (ESL) courses, and many other programs. The village and School District 54 have cultivated meaningful relationships with residents, and have provided valuable early childhood education to at-risk children. The centers house books, puzzles and parent resources
There are currently three resource centers in District 54 (at the police station, at Salem Ridge and at Woodfield Crossing in Rolling Meadows). In addition, District 54 provides similar programs at the Hoffman Estates and Hanover Park branch libraries, as well as at the Hoffman Estates Village Hall.
“It is a major focus of the village to work collaboratively with other government agencies and service providers to deliver the best amenities to meet our residents’ needs in the most cost-effective way,” Hoffman Estates Mayor William D. McLeod said. “On behalf of the Village Board and staff, we are honored to receive this recognition alongside our partners at School District 54.”
The most fascinating aspect of the resource centers is that the entire community has embraced its mission. Private businesses, nonprofit organizations, the municipality, townships, libraries, community colleges and school districts have all played a part in the CRC’s success story. Even participants in programs have found non-monetary ways to give back to the facility as a thank you for the services they received. This tremendous effort by the public is evidence that creative civic partnerships are possible, and that the CRCs are an exemplary model of community service.
The Governor’s Hometown Award recipients are selected by volunteer judges who review and rank applications based on a variety of factors, including local need, volunteer participation, use of resources and the results achieved. The Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) administers the Governor’s Hometown Awards program. Each winning group receives a road sign for its community and plaque recognizing its efforts.
Visit our early childhood website to learn more about the FIND (Family Involvement Nurturing Development) program offered at resource centers in District 54.