POP UP preparing youth, parents for rigours of school

Justin Dickie
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CUMBERLAND COUNTY Since 2000 Michelle Margarit and Maggies Place have been getting parents and kids from all over Cumberland County prepared for elementary school through POP UP.

The Preschool Outreach Program Utilizing Play was once a federally-funded program that got children and parents ready for elementary school by getting children socially involved and actively learning while parents were able to discuss problems and, as a result, realize theyre not alone in their difficulties.

In 2004, the countys three community health boards, along with the United Way, kicked in some cash when the federal government cut funding.

Margarit, program planner at Maggies Place, ended a 12-year tenure recently, so she decided to put together a presentation for the CHBs of pictures and statistics showing how successful POP UP has been.

It has made children better ready to go to school. Parents really feel less isolated, Margarit said. Most of those groups are in a very, very small, rural isolated communities of Cumberland County.

POP UP is available from September to June for residents in Springhill, Oxford, Amherst, Southampton, Parrsboro, Advocate, Pugwash, Wallace, Malagash and surrounding regions. Nearly 500 people participate in the program.

Children develop intellectually and socially through reading time, story time, playtime, and art time.

Were preparing our young children to be better ready for Grade Primary, Margarit said.



jdickie@amherstdaily.com

Organizations: United Way

Geographic location: CUMBERLAND COUNTY, Maggies Place, Springhill Oxford Southampton Parrsboro

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