Northwest Minnesota Foundation gets $200K from BCBS, will support child care providers

Times Report

    The Northwest Minnesota Foundation (NMF) has received a $200,000 grant from the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota Foundation’s Healthy Start program. NMF will use this funding to support child care providers in northwest Minnesota over the next two years.

    The Blue Cross Foundation has been funding community partners focused on the crucial early years of life for over 15 years. Their Healthy Start program was created to help improve access to quality early education.

    The first five years of a child’s life are crucial in setting them up for a successful life. About 90% of brain development occurs before the age of 5. Ensuring that families have access to quality early education programs is a top priority for the Blue Cross Foundation, since  early education helps children reach greater educational and health goals later on.

    “We are committed to making sure child care providers in our region are receiving the support they need to continue to provide quality care,” said Missy Okeson, program officer at NMF, “We are grateful to the Blue Cross Foundation for recognizing the importance of this work.”

    For more information about Healthy Star, visit To learn more about NMF and their Child Care program, visit