KidsQuest Children's Museum: Best Starts for Kids Out-of-School Time Grantee Profile
SOWA is excited to work with the many amazing organizations funded through the King County Best Starts for Kids Out-of-School Time (BSK OST) investment! These organizations, funded either as stand alone People of Color-Led organizations or Place-Based Partnerships, are all working hard to maximize their positive impact on King County youth.
Learn more about KidsQuest Children's Museum, funded as one of the organizations involved in a Place-Based Partnership Grant.
KIDSQUEST CHILDREN’S MUSEUM
KidsQuest Children’s Museum is in a Place-Based Partnership with the Bellevue School District, Boys and Girls Clubs of Bellevue, and the YMCA of Greater Seattle, focusing on serving McKinney-Vento students. In 2017, the museum moved from Factoria to downtown Bellevue which increased the number of visitors that could access KidsQuest. An important component of the KidsQuest mission is a commitment to access, including monthly low-sensory nights with dimmer lights, quieter sounds, and less people for autistic children and children with mobility issues. These accommodations have been enthusiastically received by the community.
The Museums for All program, which offers deeply discounted admission for anyone receiving government subsidies such as EBT or WIC, allows the freedom for families to attend at a time that works for their schedule. KidsQuest offers free and low cost scholarships for memberships, classes, camps and educational outreach. Outreach creates access by taking early learning and science programs out into the community. KidsQuest will be providing weekly programming at BSD and BGC sites for this Place-Based Partnership.
With the BSK OST investment, KidsQuest is able to provide more access to the museum through the membership program. In 2017 KidsQuest provided 35 scholarships. In 2018, through June KidsQuest provided over 100 scholarships. Education outreach has expanded by 30%, and consistent providers are able to go to the same location repeatedly over the course of the year, fostering deeper relationship building.
SOWA offers valuable training around SEL practices and assessment processes, which support KidsQuest’s efforts to promote SEL skills in all of their programs. The goal is to enable youth to go to school and interact with all of their environments in a more positive way. SOWA’s guidance also aids in the productivity of cross-organization collaboration. The Place-Based funding model allows KidsQuest to utilize external community spaces, creating convenience and access by serving children in their environments. KidsQuest is proud to collaborate with their partners to serve a diverse group of students and families.