To the editor:
It was almost a year ago when I first heard about a great community service funded by United Way called People Place. Finally, we moved to Ames the end of March and were able to participate in this wonderful social service.
We happen to be older parents of a single child of eighteen months old. As much as we love our little girl Ruby, we have noticed some gaps in her development. For example, Ruby had none to very little interest in reading books. Anytime I would start to read to her she would not pay attention and would just ran away. She also was lacking social interaction with other children. She loves children but also was easily frustrated and started biting to get what she wanted. Ruby also did not show a desire to wash her hands, to put away toys and so on…
From the first day we came to the People Place we have seen a great leap in Ruby’s development. In a very short time, about two weeks, Ruby shows a desire to read. She is not only attentively listening but also brings books for me to read.
Today, two months later, Ruby has become a much gentler child towards other children. Her hugs are not suffocating and she seems to do better with negative emotions. Today I saw her comforting a crying younger child, just gently tapping on his back and saying, "Don’t cry, baby."
Coming to People Place become an essential part of daily life for us. This is a place where not only children, but also parents can learn. We have several great visits with the Program Supervisor Eric Garrett. Eric is personally involved with child care, knows every child’s name, their attitude, and is able to create a very friendly and welcoming atmosphere for all parents.
We enjoy being a part of the People Place program. We hope that in these hard economic times when businesses close and social programs cancel, the local community continues to support United Way and People Place, a real gem in the Story County community.
Justin and Milla Johnson
115 S. Kellogg
Ames, IA 50010