When Janis Lutz enters the cafeteria at Allendale Elementary, she knows her morning will be filled with familiar smiles and tight hugs from the kids who join her each day at Good Time Friends. Her welcoming face has been a part of Good Time Friends for over 17 years and reminds each child that they are safe, cared for, and loved well.
Good Time Friends is a before and after-school program designed to support working parents who need childcare help during the early morning and late afternoon hours. Started in 1987, Good Time Friends has seen hundreds of students enjoy crafts, computer time, read-alouds, and playtime together.
After just one conversation with Janis, you’ll hear her heart for the kids who seem to be loved as her own. “I just love the kids — being with them is where my heart is at. What I like is that we (the staff) get to grow with the kids. We get them when they’re little and get to see them get older. We have so much fun!”
The students of Good Time Friends love racing around the gym and playing games such as “lights on/lights off”, “spider in the web”, and “sharks in the water.” Parents appreciate that students have the opportunity to complete homework together and use the computer labs as needed. They also applaud the ratio of staff members to students, which at the moment stands around 1:12!
Janis shared that she’s never had a child who didn’t like coming to the program, adding, “Some parents worry that their child will be in tears or that they won’t enjoy their time with us, but that never happens. In fact, the kids often don’t want to leave!”
Students are welcome to attend the program on an as-needed basis after registering, whether that is daily, weekly, or sporadically based on the parents’ schedules. Drop-off begins at 6 a.m and care continues until school begins; afternoon care is provided if the school has a scheduled half-day, but otherwise supervision runs from the end of school until 6 p.m.
For more information or to register your child(ren), please contact Janis Lutz at 616-892-5579 or call Evergreen Elementary at 616-892-3465. Please scroll down to see more great photos of Good Time Friends!