50 Home Based slots to be filled by May, 2010

Girard - Thanks to a grant from the Department of Health & Human Services/Office of Head Start (OHS) in the amount of $623,560, the Southeast Kansas Community Action Program (SEK-CAP) will soon be able to extend Early Head Start participation to 50 additional families. Applications for participation will be sought and accepted from families in Chautauqua, Elk, Woodson, Allen, Wilson, and Linn counties.

Home Based Early Head Start is a program that teaches expecting mothers and/or families of children 0 to 3 years old how to engage with, develop, and encourage their child'€™s growth and education in a healthy and positive way. Families that participate in the program learn how to identify and track changes and needs throughout a child'€™s developmental years. The funding from OHS is made available through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act as a two-year grant. SEK-CAP is anticipating an additional $560,412 that will allow for the continuation of this Home Based Early Head Start program through 2011. The grant will allow SEK-CAP to create seven jobs, including five new Home Based Family Educators.

SEK-CAP currently administers Early Head Start services in Bourbon, Cherokee, Crawford, Labette, Montgomery, and Neosho counties, assisting 202 families. Ten families are served through another initiative in Allen County. For more information about SEK-CAP Early Childhood Services, contact Linda Broyles or Joanie Burke at the SEK-CAP administrative offices in Girard.

Becky-GrayBecky Gray has joined SEK-CAP as the Director of Research, Planning, and Grants Development. Her work is a critical component of administrative services and we welcome the considerable expertise and enthusiasm that she brings to the position. 

Becky is a graduate of Rogers State University and is nearing completion of her MA in English, Professional Writing, and Rhetoric at Pittsburg State University.  She also served as an instructor and graduate assistant at PSU.  Her advanced writing abilities and exceptional organizational skills will be a great addition to the Management Team.  Becky's office extension number is 1026 and her email address is  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Becky lives in Pittsburg, and has a daughter Elizabeth (6) and a son Oakley (15).  Let's all welcome her to SEK-CAP and wish her every success as she begins a new career journey in service to individuals, families, and children in southeast Kansas.

cooking 1SEK-CAP Riverton Head Start children are a little more than curious about how to mix up some cornbread and biscuits. The A.M. class helped to cook up the yummy cornbread for Wednesday's lunch and the P.M. class baked their biscuits for Thursday's breakfast. The kids had so much fun cooking that we just had to share. Next up may be a throw down with Bobby Flay!

Boyd Koehn(Left to Right) Community Action Partnership President & CEO, Donald Mathis; SEK-CAP Board Chairman, Boyd Koehn; Boyd’s wife of 35 years, Kay Koehn; and national CAP Board Chairman John Edward, pose together after the awards ceremony.

Boyd Koehn, board chairman of the Southeast Kansas Community Action Program, received the Jayne Thomas Grassroots Volunteer Recognition Award during the Community Action Partnership’s Annual Conference in Boston. Boyd, his wife Kay, and three SEK-CAP representatives attended the annual event, which was held the week of August 30th. Steve Lohr, SEK-CAP executive director said, “In my 31 years with SEK-CAP, I have not seen another individual as extraordinarily devoted to helping people and changing lives. It was an honor to accompany Boyd and to watch with pride as he received this prestigious award.”

The Jayne Thomas Volunteer Recognition Award was established by the Community Action Partnership in 1988 to acknowledge exemplary achievements in support of Community Action. The award is named after Jayne Thomas, who was an outstanding community action leader from Roanoke, Virginia, and who served as the Community Services Block Grant director for that state. The award is given to an individual each year that has shown outstanding dedication and made extraordinary contributions to a Community Action Agency. “Over 1500 people gathered together in Boston to learn, to share experiences, and to acknowledge a few very special people who are making America a better place to live. Boyd’s caring spirit is representative of the thousands of people who volunteer in community action agencies every day,” said Lohr.

Please view Boyd’s introduction video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uB9sz-GIPjA


county fair art winners copyThe Iola Head Start Center is home to several award winning artists.  Around 50 masterpieces were submitted to the Iola County Fair, including collages, Tempra and watercolor, and pen and ink drawings. Several were awarded ribbons!