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A Better Bakery in Bethel

Creative ME Daycare – How a passion for children grew to a love for family

Supporting the overall health, wellness and success of the family is what best supports the child and his/her development.
Mechele Ellis, Owner of Creative ME Childcare, LLC | New Haven
Meet Mechele Ellis
 

Owner, Creative ME Childcare, LLC | New Haven

The Backstory

Mechele Ellis found her calling in life at age 14. As an assistant at a busy Bridgeport child care center, she fell in love with helping children and families. Through college and afterward, she devoted herself to family service, working continuously in youth outreach, direct care, and emergency, residential, and community-based programs. Again and again, her experiences demonstrated that successful childhood development is keenly tied to the health and wellness of families. She began envisioning a unique model for a full-service child care center - one that truly addressed the needs of working parents. In 2003, Creative ME Childcare was born. Offering infant, toddler and preschool age care, Creative ME provides early morning and evening care, and meals from breakfast to supper. The curriculum is responsive, based on student interests, observations, assessments, and family needs.

 

How Women's Business Development Council Helped

The facility was operating at capacity at its original site when the pandemic hit, and the needs of Creative ME families quickly accelerated. Mechele moved to a larger building and turned to WBDC to help outfit the new space to take on up to 30 more children. With the Equity Match Grant and Child Care Business Grant from WBDC, Mechele was able to outfit a kitchen area for food preparation, install new flooring, redevelop classrooms, and add a fenced-in playground with turf. She now has the capacity to accommodate more than 55 children at her Blake Street center in New Haven. There are many essential workers among the families at Creative ME. The program’s expanded hours allow parents to tackle challenging work schedules, knowing that their children are receiving quality attention and care. “With extended hours, families and siblings are allowed to stay at one program throughout the duration of the day, without all the changing or switching,” Mechele said. Mechele had heard of WBDC’s work through nonprofit educational and professional networks. When the details of WBDC's Opportunity Fund grant programs emerged, she knew she had to apply. “I wanted to be able to provide a greatly needed service to support other women, and all that we do,” she said. “A lot of women want to be entrepreneurs but can’t get childcare, so they have to be working to support the whole family, and they often feel limited. This is the process and I just want to say, ‘I can help you, let me help you.’” Mechele views WBDC as an oasis for women business owners and entrepreneurs. “It’s the hub for women supporting one another, giving feedback, and passing information and sharing resources,” she said. “What an amazing organization to be a part of."

 

Find Out More About Creative ME Childcare, LLC | New Haven

creativemedaycare.com