Hazel’s Christian Preschool in Modesto, California, is a progressive year-round preschool and full-service child care facility that cares for toddlers from ages six weeks to 12 years. The curriculum, coupled with a custom designed facility and a low teacher to student ratio, ensures top shelf service for children and their parents. Owners Odoom and Hazel Domson opened Hazel’s Christian Preschool & Childcare Center in 2014.
While owning a business was new for the couple, operating a childcare center wasn’t. Hazel had worked for 14 years as a preschool teacher and more than six years as an administrator for a large childcare center in the area. When that center abruptly closed its doors, she recognized the need for a high quality childcare center in her community.
After developing a business plan, the couple secured a Microloan with Fresno CDFI, a DCC recipient, to start the childcare center. It should be mentioned that all of this occurred as Odoom was out on military duty training out of State—no small feat!
The Domsons’ first childcare center employs 20 teachers and aides, and its annual enrollment is 85 children. In 2016, the couple saw an opportunity to open a second center allowing them to expand by 56 students. A second Fresno CDFI microloan loan in December 2016 provided the capital needed to obtain licensing, furnish, and hire an additional 15 teachers and aides.
Within short period of time, Hazel’s Christian Preschool & Childcare Center has become a household name in Modesto. They have more than 1,000 Facebook likes, 5-star reviews on various social media including Yelp, Yellow Pages, Google etc. And they won the 2016 Macaroni’s Kids Best Childcare/School, Day Care Category.
(Date of loan: 2016. Date of story publication: 2017)