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Discovery Center Makes Plans To Offer Childcare To Local Healthcare Workers

Michele Skalicky

Healthcare workers could soon have an option for educational childcare as schools close for long periods due to concerns about the novel coronavirus.

The Discovery Center of Springfield is firming up plans to offer a seven-day-a-week science camp facility for healthcare workers at places like CoxHealth and Mercy that will be open from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m., according to the center’s executive director, Rob Blevins. 

The Discovery Center is now closed to the public to prepare “to offer emergency education and childcare to hundreds of kids each day,” a news release states.

“Mister Rogers taught us to look for the helpers,” said Blevins, “but we must be doing much more than just looking right now. We need to be helping the helpers.”

The Discovery Center has been working to educate the public on protecting themselves from the coronavirus.  Last week, the center began offering its Science of Germs and Hand Washing program to visitors and children at no cost and launched a new exhibit on the science of fevers using a display screen and a thermal camera.

The Discovery Center is seeking private donors and is working with the Community Foundation of the Ozarks, the Springfield-Greene County Health Department, and the Missouri Foundation for Health to secure the funding necessary to run the childcare program. Donations can be mailed to the Discovery Center, 438 E. St. Louis St., Springfield, MO 65806 or made online. There is also a live fundraiser on the Discovery Center’s Facebook page.