Robin's Nest Children's Center
Robins’ Nest is a high quality, non-profit, early care and education program in the Old North End of Burlington. The center opened in 1985 to provide quality care and education in multi-age groups with high ratios of adults to children. This provides an opportunity for children to travel through developmental stages at their own rate and to learn from one another. Our mission is to provide a play-based environment for infants, toddlers and preschoolers; nurturing minds, friendships and families. The Robin’s Nest respects and values each individual family and their involvement is essential to the care and education that we provide.
A 5 STAR PROGRAM
In June of 2017 Robin's Nest was recognized for 32 years of exemplary work supporting the well-being of Vermont's young children and families. Robin's Nest received a Whitney S. Landon award at Turrell Day for Children. The grantees highlighted the program the for providing the gold standard of quality care and education, for strong business practices and supporting the professionalization of the field. Three Robin's Nest parents wrote testimonials to support the program, excerpts from their letters follow:
From a letter describingthe program formation: "There were four or five mothers and the director – all who needed childcare, all who understood the importance of childcare as a community need, and who wanted to keep our children together. We all had different backgrounds, skills, and expertise. We understood the significance of a stable business model and how we could each contribute to creating that for our new childcare center. We believed it was essential to hire qualified staff and pay them a living wage with benefits. We did not realize we were starting a “model childcare business”. We were doing what we believed was best for children and their families. Our non-profit business was child centered. Those of us who were in on the ground level were the original Board of Directors. We learned as we went along, always keeping what is best for children as our guiding vision. Quality care for our children was an expected result of our work. What we did not expect was that this would be such a rewarding learning experience for the parents. Participating in the planning and implementation of this program propelled so many of us to be even more involved in our communities. Later RNCC board members and parent volunteers went on to serve as community volunteers, local school board members, select board members, or legislators. This continues today. Quality childcare is what makes our economy grow." Joan Lenes, one of the founding mother's of the program
"I discovered the treasure of the Robins Nest early childhood center and community as a young first-time mom. I had no idea what I was in for on this journey as a mother and I needed so much support. The incredible teachers and staff at Robins Nest not only offered my daughter outstanding social & life skills, but they also modeled the same for my family. It was through the modeling of the finest communication filled with play and compassion that I learned how to connect and offer guidance to my child."
Connie Coleman, alumni parent
"We have nothing but great things to say about Robin's Nest Children's Center. Our daughter, Violet, started at the "Nest" when she was just 5 months old, and like a lot of first-time parents, we were nervous and uncertain about transitioning our infant into someone else's care. The staff at Robin's Nest welcomed Violet with open arms and open hearts, and made instant connections with her and with us as if we were the only family in their care. We quickly realized that Robin's Nest offers a true partnership between parents and staff for the benefit of the children. Regular communication, especially in the early months, ensured that we were all in the loop about Violet's needs and milestones, and that we were on the same page about our wishes for her care. Robin's Nest staff offer gentle guidance backed by years of experience, but have always deferred to our daughter's individuality and our wishes as her parents. Nevertheless, we have learned so much about parenting thanks to their advice that we often trust their instincts more than our own! Beyond just the logistics of our partnership, we feel incredibly lucky to have such loving, supportive people in Violet's life." Todd and Alicia Taylor, Current Parents