ROSWELL, Ga. – First Lady of Georgia Sandra Deal was the guest of honor at the Roswell Women’s Club kickoff luncheon held at the Child Development Association (CDA) on Wednesday, Sept. 11.
She praised the Roswell Women’s Club and the CDA on their continuing efforts to support literacy in Georgia and also addressed her “Read Across Georgia” initiative.
“I realized that if we were going to make a difference in Georgia and in the economy, then we needed to start at the beginning and work with the little ones,” said Deal.
She said that most importantly, parents must be taught how to properly care for their children. She stressed how imperative it is that parents know how infants need to sleep, that they take their children to get immunizations and that they read to their children.
“We want to help them to develop their minds and become creative,” Deal added.
Following her message, the Roswell Women’s Club presented a $2,000 check to Donna Smythe, executive director of the CDA.
“You have taken us so far,” Smythe said of the Roswell Women’s Club. “You have helped us professionalize our staff, you have raised morale and you have opened a window to an ambition relating to children and their destiny.”
The CDA, at 89 Grove Way in Roswell, offers affordable early learning programs and childcare for preschool children of low-income working families.
“Our mission is to prepare economically disadvantaged children for success in school and the Roswell Women’s Club has been an integral part in our success – we are very grateful,” Smythe said.
The CDA recently received the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) re-accreditation. Smythe said this is the highest form of accreditation a preschool can have.
Deal said seeing the children is what she enjoys most. During the meeting, children at the CDA were brought out to show members of the club their singing and dancing skills. Deal and club President Julian Tomesh joined in the excitement.
“You have to lose all your inhibitions when you’re with them,” Deal said afterward. “But it’s so much fun.”