Busy Kids Creative Learning Center, Inc. of Highlands County
Located in Sebring, Busy Kids Creative Learning Center, Inc., is an early childhood, educational program, which has 155 children enrolled. The Center contracts with the State of Florida for VPK and school readiness services, as well as provides private childcare and preschool services.
Hurricane Irma caused widespread damage to businesses and residences in Highlands County, and Busy Kids Creative Learning Center was no exception.
Once the storm cleared, the Highlands County Board of County Commissioner’s Economic Development office quickly set to work canvassing the community to let businesses know about the available recovery resources. One of the first businesses that Meghan DiGiacomo, Business Development Manager, came across was Busy Kids Learning Center.
Working in close partnership with the economic development office, Bill McKown, business consultant with the Florida SBDC at University of South Florida, based at South Florida State College in Avon Park, revisited the center to discuss the Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan. When asked about her experience with the storm and the assistance received, owner Anne Lang recalled:
What type of damage occurred?
Roof damage; ceiling damage; flooding throughout the building causing flooring, electrical and equipment damage.
How will the Bridge Loan help?
The Bridge Loan is incredibly helpful. Not only did we sustain physical damage, but we had loss of income due to temporary closure. It will help me make payroll – we have 19 employees – and front deposits until the insurance money is available.
How was the Florida SBDC at USF helpful during this process?
The SBDC, especially Bill McKown, made me aware of the process, explained the application requirements and assisted me through every step of the loan process. I am very grateful for his guidance and follow through!