Early Childhood Development
A Gift That Keeps Giving
Our Focus At GROW
Our early childhood development (ECD) center has a child-parent focused program, invested in developing the whole child and the child’s parents within one program focus. Missiologically, our focus intervention on cognitive early childhood development and parental involvement has proven results. Our program combines a well-designed child (ECD) - parent adult mentoring (AM) model that seeks appropriate contextual methodology to achieve developmental benefits in children.
Our combined ECD and AM practice focuses on a holistic method that invests in developing cognitive and social development along with spiritual formation for a child, with great contextual sensitivity. Furthermore, we coach parents through health and nutrition, as well as better parenting skills. We observe substantial positive impact on the development of children from economically disadvantaged backgrounds.
The Philemon Project’s (ECD) is making a profound impact on the lives of at risk children and their parent(s). We focus on three core areas in our work:
Meet Our Staff
GROW trains its staff in the best practices of early childhood development and empowers them to facilitate pro-social behavior, provide activities that foster appropriate social, cognitive and emotional skills, provide necessary assistance to students’ parent(s), and develop a social network with the community—all within a Christian worldview.
The Philemon Project not only provides a safe, clean and supportive Christian environment for the children, but also meaningful work, training, and empowerment to its staff, who are ALL women—a societal group usually marginalized in the Middle East.
We currently have 16 female staff members in our Project. We run five sections for our children. Each class section has one primary teacher and a teacher’s assistant. Along with our teaching staff, we have three support staff, and a director to oversee the day-to-day operation and a nurse to ensure the health and well-being of our children and parents.
We are also grateful for our volunteers, who donate their time and talent to serve the project, each bringing their commitment to love and serve God, as well as their experience, to serve the children.
A Message From Our Teachers
"For me being a teacher is not just a job. Teaching is not something just to pay the bills. It’s not a profession where you count down the hours left in the day. Children are the most important part of every society; that's why I chose this career path. I love teaching because teaching allows me to give a child the experience of someone who really understands them and accepts them for who they are. I love being an early childhood development teacher at GROW, because I am passionate about children and I enjoy interacting with them, I love to know their language. It is so important to guide children as they develop. I love to share what they feel and enjoy every second with them while also meeting their needs for health, safety and care."
- Eliza Kodjaian
"Teaching is my passion! At GROW, we work with kids from different diversities and intercultural backgrounds. Beside the early learning foundation that we're providing (alphabets; recognizing letters and sounds; identifying shapes, colors, and numbers), we are also shaping their lives, by teaching them from the very young age life manners and socializing skills. We also help our students express their feelings and emotions through songs, drama, and arts, and especially through creative play. Kids are worth investing effort in. I gladly choose to be part of this process. Being a teacher at GROW lets me invest my love, life skills, education and beliefs in my work."
- Nairy Mardirossian
We are pleased to report that in early 2018 we will add a social worker to help us carry out our work in our adult mentoring ministry. Having an experienced social worker in place to serve the adult mentoring ministry permits our work to move into the next phase of our operation. The adult mentoring personnel will directly work with our families and support the progress we're making with their children.
In our adult mentoring program, we seek to address the gap in parenting skills among the underserved, through modeling and teaching wholistic and healthy patterns of child rearing, child protection, and by supporting healthy family patterns. Our adult mentoring program focuses on three stages of the mentoring process—preparing parents with new skills, walking with parents as they raise their children while working long hours, and empowering parents to persevere in the process.