FAIRBANKS, Alaska - A state wide program to help children from birth to 3 years old has been cut for the upcoming fiscal year.
According to Executive Director of Thrivalaska, Alicia Berka, the Early Head Start program will no longer be receiving money from the state starting July 1st, 2018, which could lead to the dissolution of the program.
This would affect over 700 children in Alaska, and over 100 infants and toddlers in the Fairbanks area alone.
The early childcare program is designed to provide safe, high quality, affordable childcare for parents either at or below the poverty line.
Currently, the Fairbanks Native Association, Tanana Chiefs Conference, and Thrivalaska have Early Head Start programs.
Berka commented on the sudden loss of funding for the program.
Alicia Berka; Executive Director - Trivalaska>>"From birth to three, their brains are developing at a faster rate than they will at any other time in their lives, and now we've just heard that they are completely cutting that out of our budgets. It's going to be devastating for many programs. We will need to figure out how to come up with $70,000 to supplement this program, if we can. We don't even know if we can. We just found out last week, so we're going to form a committee to figure out how to do this."