WATERVILLE — The Maine Community Foundation recently awarded Educare Central Maine funds to support parents and their young children who are homeless.

According to a press release, the foundation funds, along with a grant from the United Way of Mid Maine, will enhance a partnership between families served at Mid-Maine Homeless Shelter and Educare Central Maine. The funds will be used to support homeless children ages 5 and younger at Educare twice weekly, while providing parents with educational and parent support services, as the Shelter staff triage with Educare staff to identify permanent, safe housing and work.

This collaboration is in its second year and opens doors to children learning and development within the high-quality learning environment, as well as supports the area’s highest-need parents in crisis in their most important job — parenting and moving towards self-sufficiency.

According to program staff, homeless parents with young children have few, if any, options appropriate for their infants and young children and often spend the day without suitable shelter. Seeking employment, housing or needed services (such as family violence, mental health, or substance abuse assistance), that may contribute to homelessness is severely hindered with a small child in-tow.

For more information, visit educarecentralmaine.org.