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Stand Up for Children campaign raising money for Children’s Place’s news home

April 17, 2018 GMT

A local nonprofit that provides therapeutic childcare and other services for troubled youngsters and their families needs a new facility that has more space.

That’s why Children’s Place has a plan to relocate and is seeking money to help complete the move.

Funds raised by the Stand Up for Children campaign will be used “to renovate an existing structure that will serve our community for at least another 50 years,” Children’s Place Executive Director Peggy Ford told the Rotary Club of Aiken during its meeting April 16 at Newberry Hall. “We have raised $1.2 million of our goal to raise $1.5 million.”

The building is on the corner of Willow Run Road and Beaufort Street.

“We actually have bought it already, and we are excited about it,” Ford said. “It sits on nine acres of land, so we’ll be able to have lots of playgrounds for all age groups.”

Children’s Place’s current headquarters is at 310 Barnwell Ave. N.E.

“We work in less than 4,000 square feet of space,” Ford said. “We provide therapy at picnic tables, on our front porch and in small cubbies. Our classrooms are 12 feet by 18 feet – the size of many bedrooms – and they each serve 12 children and four or five grownups. Our speech therapy and occupational therapy are done within three feet of two bathrooms that serve 40 young children.”

Because of the crowded conditions, Children’s Place isn’t able to provide assistance to many people that would benefit from its services.

“We have the knowledge and the experience to serve families that need a second chance, but we just don’t have the room,” Ford said.

S.C. Rep. Bill Clyburn, D-Aiken, and his wife, Beverly, are the honorary co-chairs for Stand Up for Children.

Ford said Ronnie Maxwell of Maxwell Law Firm and former Aiken Standard publisher Scott Hunter are the campaign’s “working co-chairs.”

For more information about Stand Up for Children, call Children’s Place at 803-641-4144.