ANTIGO – The old proverb says that “it takes a village to raise a child.”

Today, it takes the whole village, city or town — employers, families and government — to raise a child care center.

Gabby Sorano needed support from all three to open the 35-slot Antigo Child Care Center last year in the city of 8,100 people 80 miles northwest of Green Bay.

Langlade County, where Antigo is located, is a child care desert: an area either without child care or where there’s fewer than one slot per three children. Langlade currently has one child care slot for every 4.3 children, the highest ratio in the 10-county North Central Wisconsin region.

Close and other city and county officials would also help Sorano apply for and secure a Main Street Bounceback Grant from the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp. to help with startup costs.

[Adapted from: It takes a village: How collaboration helped a small northern Wisconsin city add crucial child care May 3, 2023 Milwaukee Journal Sentinel]