In 1978, the Port Washington Public Schools sponsored the Mother-Child Home Program, an outreach program to help disadvantaged families learn successful parenting skills. Lynne Randolph, the program’s director, quickly realized that the entire community could benefit from this type of education and support. With the help of the local school district, community agencies, businesses, and individual supporters, she searched for funding and a suitable location for a family center.
In 1980, the Parent Resource Center opened in one room of the old Flower Hill School on Campus Drive, offering three discussion groups and a few hours of drop-in play time. Shortly thereafter, the Mother-Child Home Program was discontinued due to lack of funding, and the PRC began its Outreach Program to provide for those families who had been receiving assistance from the canceled program.
Over the past 30 years, the PRC has grown to over 500 family-members who actively assist the permanent staff in selecting programs, teaching classes, planning events, and raising money.
Although the PRC has undergone many changes in the past 3 decades, most notably its move into the Landmark Building on Main Street, the PRC’s primary goal has remained the same: to provide a safe and healthy environment for parents and children to learn, have fun, and make friends.
The PRC offers classes for infants and toddlers and their parents such as Mommy & Me, movement and music, art, Play Preschool and more . These classes allow infants and toddlers to use their rapidly developing skills and learn basic social interaction with the reassuring presence of their caregivers.
The PRC also provides classes for older children, such as Spanish, Yoga, Reading, and Multi-Media Art. At this age, children are eager to learn, and these classes give them the opportunity to experiment in a safe and open environment.
As any parent can attest, raising children is not an easy task, so the PRC offers adult education and support groups such through our Parent University and in classes such as Mothers of Infants.
Most importantly, the PRC continues in its original mission to help at-risk families. The Outreach Program now helps over 50 local families obtain the financial, legal, and job training assistance to which they are entitled. The PRC also provides workshops, recreational outings, and educational activities where positive parenting strategies are taught, modeled, and reinforced.