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From Rising Star to 5 Star

“I love to provide service to children, I love to see the smiles on their faces when they figure something out or learn something new. I love working with children.”

– Sahera Abukhamireh, Director
Kids N’ Care, Milwaukee

On the Rise

Sahera Abukhamireh has come a long way since her center program, Kids N’ Care, was first featured as a “Rising Star.” Sahera launched Kids N’ Care in January of 2000, with her two boys and three other children. She chose a building that was once a house because she wanted going to school to, “feel like a second home” for children and their families. Gaining recognition as a child care program and as a provider was an uphill battle. Sahera started by inviting friends and family to enroll and slowly built her program’s reputation. As the center moved forward, Sahera says that YoungStar played a huge part in perfecting the program. “I loved the idea of YoungStar,” says Sahera. She not only appreciated the guidance YoungStar provided, she had seen too many child care programs before YoungStar that were not providing quality care, and did not plan to be one of them. With the help of her YoungStar TC, Tracie Jarentowski of 4C for Children, Sahera set out to provide the best learning environment possible for the children in her program.

Expanding Their Reach

With YoungStar guidance Sahera updated classroom toys to be more educationally targeted and built defined play environments within the center. “It is so nice how neat and organized it is,” says Sahera,  “and how the children are learning through movement from this area to that area.” Sahera also really appreciated her TC’s efforts to provide one on one training and question and answer opportunities for the staff, because this “brought a lot of  quality for the [program].” As Kids N’ Care continually set and reached higher and higher enrollment capacities, the building went through various remodels, including an addition, with the help of Sahera’s husband. In this way, they were able to increase their child capacity and age range in order to meet the demands for their program. They now have 84 children enrolled at Kids N’ Care, ranging from six weeks to 13 years old. Thanks to Sahera’s efforts, the center is accredited and has earned a 5 Star rating.

Still Reaching Higher

Sahera has her sights set high for the future of Kids N’ Care, and is already on her way there. Not only does she plan to make sure that her current Kids N’ Care center keeps their 5 Star rating, she is opening another child care center.  She has hired a Center Director and says that she and her husband will supervise both centers to make certain that the high level of quality she has set for her current center, “follows us to our second location.” She stresses that especially with the opening of her second center, she and her staff will continue to take advantage of the high-quality trainings and other assistance that YoungStar offers. “We are accredited and we have 5 Stars,” says Sahera. “But we still welcome YoungStar.”

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“The Young Star Program is a great asset to the State of Wisconsin. It offers the tools, guidance, and opportunity for our child care centers to rise to the level our children deserve.” – Amanda Hollis, Child Care Assistant CAP […]

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