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How Early Learning Impacted Me – Sheltering Arms

By Blythe Robinson
President and CEO, Sheltering Arms

When I think about Ms. Cathy at Westmore Day Nursery, I distinctly remember things like sitting “criss-cross apple sauce” during story time. I remember where we used to eat and where we took naps on our cots. I even remember Ms. Cathy’s back rubs. They were the best.

Not too long ago, I had the opportunity to stop by Westmore when I went to New York for a long weekend. When I walked in, it felt so small.  As a little girl, it seemed so big! I instantly smiled as so many memories came back to me.

Ms. Cathy was the owner of Westmore. She was warm and caring, and she created an environment where we could ask questions and explore. To me, Ms. Cathy represented the gift of early learning and the amazing impact it can have on a child’s life.

I never would have known back then that my experience there as a young, inquisitive little girl would spark something in me that would stay throughout my school years and career as an adult: a love for reading, an excitement about learning, and the desire to pass it on.

Today, I have the honor of leading the largest nonprofit early learning organization in the state of Georgia. As I walk down our halls at Sheltering Arms, I see children exploring and learning. They are playing, having story time, reciting new words and reading books. They are happy and excited, just like I was when I was their age.

The sky’s the limit to where they will go from here. That’s the power of embracing early and the promise of quality early learning!


Sheltering Arms transforms the lives of children, their families and communities through model early childhood education and leadership in the field. Sheltering Arms provides high‐quality early education, child care and comprehensive family support services to more than 3,600 children and their families annually at 16 metropolitan Atlanta locations in Cobb, DeKalb, Douglas, Fulton and Gwinnett counties.

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