MountainHeart celebrates events

The second Sunday in May has long been recognized as the day to honor mothers and their commitment to children. The Friday before Mother’s Day, May 9, is Provider Appreciation Day, a special day to recognize child care providers, teachers, school-age program staff, child care center directors and staff, and all those who work with children and are responsible for their education and care.

It is estimated that nearly 11 million children under age 5 are cared for by 2.8 million child care providers in the United States.

“Every day, local child care providers care for a number of children under the age of 5,” said Melodee Price, early childhood specialist for MountainHeart. “The children and parents of this area depend on our child care providers. May 9 is the day to recognize the hard work and dedication of these providers and to acknowledge their contributions to quality care.”

Provider Appreciation Day was started in 1996 by a group of volunteers in New Jersey who saw the need to recognize the tireless efforts of providers who care for children of working parents.

In recent years, local governments across the United States have joined many governors in proclaiming this day of recognition. Around the globe, Department of Defense installations celebrate Provider Appreciation Day by recognizing those who care for the children of military parents living both at home and abroad. Events such as luncheons, parades, dedications and other recognition celebrations are planned throughout the United States to honor and thank child care providers for their hard work and commitment to children.

In conjunction with Provider Appreciation Day, KIDS COUNT has organized Take a Flower to Childcare Day as a way to celebrate the work of child care providers. To take part in this event, join the thousands of other parents, young children and community leaders who rely on great childcare and present a flower – any kind of flower will do – to your favorite childcare providers.

“It takes a special person to work in the child care field, and these individuals are often unrecognized,” says Price. “This day offers an opportunity for parents to show their child care providers their


To learn more about Provider Appreciation Day or Take a Flower to Child Care Day, visit or

MountainHeart Child Care Resource and Referral is a program of MountainHeart Community Services, Inc. and is funded under an agreement with West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources office of Social Services. This program was established in 1992.