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25th Annual Children's Holiday Shop

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Crisis Nursery's 25th Annual Children's Holiday Shop will take place Saturday, December 2 through Saturday, December 9 at Lincoln Square in Urbana. Join our Holiday tradition! Crisis Nursery’s Holiday Shop is the perfect place for children to do their holiday shopping for everyone on their list. Print lists here: English and Spanish.

All gifts are priced between $2 and $10. Children shop with the help of a community volunteer so their gifts are a surprise for family and friends. All proceeds from the Holiday Shop support Crisis Nursery’s programs and services for the children and families of Champaign County.


There will be a coloring contest for grades K-5 this year in honor of the 25th Anniversary. All pages must be turned into the Nursery by Monday, November 27th in order to be entered to win a $20 Holiday Shop voucher. Download coloring pages here:  Grades K-2 and Grades 3-5

Holiday Shop Schedule and Hours

Saturday, December 2: 9 am-5 pm

Sunday, December 3: 12 pm-5 pm
Celebrity Volunteers: U of I Student Athletes from 12-3 pm 

Monday, December 4: 4 pm-7 pm 
Celebrity Volunteers: Parkland Golf Team from 4-5:30 pm
SANTA will be at the Shop from 4-7 pm

Tuesday, December 5: 4 pm-7 pm
Celebrity Volunteers: U of I Cheerleaders 

Wednesday, December 6: 4 pm-7 pm
Celebrity Volunteers: Local Elected Officials 

Thursday, December 7: 4 pm-7 pm

Friday, December 8: 4 pm-7 pm

Saturday, December 9:  9 am - 5 pm


Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Urbana, IL, January 20, 2017- Crisis Nursery is pleased to announce two donations that will, together, complete fundraising for its recent building expansion.

The two donations, totaling $300,000, were made by the Liautaud Family Foundation and Dan and Rhonda Proctor. This is the first-ever donation made by the Liautaud Family Foundation, established in December of 2016 by Jimmy John Liautaud, Jimmy John’s owner, founder, & chairman, and his wife, Leslie.

The Liautauds learned of the Nursery’s need to complete its $1.9 million capital campaign from the Proctors. The Liautaud Family foundation agreed to make a gift of $200,000 in conjunction with the Proctor’s gift of $100,000.

When asked how the donation came about, Jimmy John Liautaud said, “Leslie and I have three beautiful children. Family is everything to us, so when I got the call about the Crisis Nursery’s financial shortfall, Leslie and I said, ‘We’re in! Boom, the deal was done!” Life can get tough for folks and sometimes people need some help. The Crisis Nursery provides that help to keep families together.”

Crisis Nursery still has not received $285,000 from a State of Illinois DCEO grant that was awarded for the expansion in 2009. The promised funds spurred the expansion project initially, but were frozen due to the lack of a state budget.

Angie Hatfield Marker, Crisis Nursery’s Director of Development and Communications said, “We are so very grateful to Jimmy John, Leslie and the Liautaud family and to Dan and Rhonda Proctor for their generous donations. Their commitment to our community continues to be incredible and their faith in our organization’s mission to prevent child abuse and neglect in Champaign County is so appreciated by all of us at the Nursery, most especially those children and families using our programs and services.”

Crisis Nursery’s Executive Director, Stephanie Record said, “The Liautauds and the Proctors stepped in at a critical time to help us complete the payment for the construction of our newly expanded building. Their gift, along with other generous community donations, allows us to now direct our fundraising efforts toward hiring and training more staff to serve more children and families in our community. Our goal for the capital campaign and building expansion was to serve more children and reduce the incidence of turning families away. Increasing and sustaining the quality of care we provide the community continues to be our goal moving forward.”

Crisis Nursery is the only emergency-based child care facility in Champaign County open 24 hours, 365 days a year for the entire community to access with no fees or income eligibility. In addition to safe shelter for children, ages birth through six, the Nursery also provides family support and parenting education to strengthen parenting skills and confidence. The Nursery’s Safe Children program is available for families who are experiencing a crisis or emergency and no other resources are available to help. The Nursery’s Strong Families program provides support, resources and services to families dealing with challenges such as parental stress, perinatal depression, homelessness and teen parenting. Last year the Nursery served 860 children and provided 33,735 hours of crisis care. In addition, 70 parent support groups, 64 Parent-Child Interaction groups, 16 nurturing parenting education classes and 1,024 home visits were also facilitated. 

Join our Miles for Smiles "Fundracing" Team

Monday, January 23, 2017

Did you make a New Year's Resolution to get in shape? Participate in the 2017 Christie Clinic Illinois Marathon on April 20-22 and join our Miles for Smiles "FundRacing" Team! It's an easy way to donate your running talent and make a difference.

Whether you're running the 5K, 10K, an I-Challenge, half or full marathon, consider joining our Miles for Smiles Team and give new purpose to your training by raising money for Crisis Nursery. In addition to completing your race goal, you’ll have the satisfaction of knowing you are helping children and families in our community who have nowhere else to turn. 

Crisis Nursery creates an "Island of Safety" dedicated to the prevention of child abuse and neglect by providing 24-hour emergency care for children and support to strengthen families in crisis. We depend on generous businesses and individuals like you to ensure our doors stay open 24-hours a day, 365 days a year. The money you raise will go towards our Safe Children and Strong Families programs. 

When at full capacity, it costs $1,800 a day to keep the Nursery open. Our yearly goal for Miles for Smiles is to raise $12,600-- enough to support a week at the Nursery! We encourage you to set an individual goal that you feel is appropriate and comfortable for you. Consider setting your sights high and sponsoring A Day at the Nursery by raising $1,800!

Are you ready?
1) Contact Special Events & Marketing Coordinator Renae Kirkton by e-mail at or by phone at 217-337-2731 to sign-up for Miles for Smiles.
2) Visit Crisis Nursery’s imAthelete page to start your own fundraising page. Click “Become a fundraiser!" under our logo on the left side of the screen to get started and follow the easy steps. You will be asked to register with imAthlete and can then customize your fundraising page—personalize it by uploading a picture, adding details about your race, and sharing why you decided to run for Crisis Nursery.
3) Invite family, friends, and colleagues to support your training and fundraising efforts. Some unique fundraising ideas include: keep a training log/blog online and ask followers to donate $.50/$1/$5 for each mile you run…consider asking for donations in lieu of a birthday or anniversary gift…many workplaces will sponsor you or match donations…ask all of your Facebook friends to donate a small amount…the options are limitless!
4) Train and run your race!
5) Feel great about finishing your race, and all the smiles you've helped bring to a child’s face!

Expansion and Capital Campaign

Monday, November 21, 2016

Crisis Nursery is in the midst of a $1.9 million capital campaign to expand our building and staffing to meet the increasing demand for services. Through construction of an approximately 5,000 square foot expansion, capacity will be increased by 50%, with the ability to serve up to 18 children at once, reducing the incidence of turning families away by 90%. The expansion will also provide additional meeting space for groups and counseling within our Strong Families program. Click here to read more about the project and learn how you can get involved. Thanks for your support!

get involved with our strong families program!

Friday, November 18, 2016

Crisis Nursery's Strong Families program is open to all families in Champaign County. We offer home visiting, support groups, crisis counseling and referrals for community resources. Read more about our great program here and check out our programming calendar to find something that fits your schedule! 

Crisis Nursery Offering "Stewards of Children" Trainings

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Crisis Nursery is now offering the Darkness to Light child sexual abuse prevention training Stewards of Children. Trainings are being offered to any interested groups, namely partner organizations and agencies, schools, daycares and churches throughout Champaign County. 

Studies estimate that about 1 in 10 children experience child sexual abuse before they are 18, and this abuse has devastating and long-lasting consequences. Stewards of Children focuses on training adults in the warning signs of sexual abuse and in their responsibility to report these signs. The 2-hour training provides adults with seven important steps in preventing and reacting to the reality of child sexual abuse. Though the subject matter is serious, Stewards of Children presents the material in a way that is empowering, not fear-focused or discouraging.

“Our staff has completed the Stewards of Children training, and it was very worthwhile,” said Crisis Nursery Executive Director Stephanie Record. “The burden shouldn’t be placed on children to recognize and report sexual abuse. Kids shouldn’t be responsible to protect themselves from predators. As adults, that’s our job. We’re excited to partner with Darkness to Light to make their award-winning training program, Stewards of Children, available for the community.”

Training is being offered to all Crisis Nursery volunteers and families that use Nursery services. Additionally, partner agencies throughout Champaign County are invited to attend. Two trainings are scheduled in February, with more being added for interested groups. This initiative is made possible with funds received from the University of Illinois as part of a legal settlement between the Big Ten and Penn State University due to the Jerry Sandusky case.

Darkness to Light is an international non-profit organization. Stewards of Children is the only nationally distributed adult-focused, evidence-based and third-party evaluated program. For more information or to schedule a training, call (217) 337-2731.

Crisis Nursery to Receive Money from Penn State Settlement

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

It was announced on Monday that Crisis Nursery would be one of four local agencies to receive money from the University of Illinois in a legal settlement between the Big Ten and Penn State University in the Jerry Sandusky case. Click here to read the news release from UIUC. For coverage by The News Gazette, click here.

"While the acts that occurred at Penn State University were horrific, these dollars will be used to make a positive impact in our community through education, prevention and direct intervention," said Stephanie Record, Executive Director at Crisis Nursery. "We have worked closely with CASA and CAC for the past two years to spearhead an awareness campaign during Children Abuse Prevention Month in April. Crisis Nursery is pleased that we will be able to continue this effort at a higher level in the upcoming year to educate the community on the seriousness of this issue and how to best identify and support children who have been victims of sexual, physical and mental abuse."

Help Us Save Some $$$

Thursday, July 25, 2013

In an effort to save on printing and postage costs, Crisis Nursery is starting to email donation receipts to donors whose email addresses we have on file. Would you consider helping out by providing your email address? If you would like to receive your receipts via email going forward, please contact Anna McCormick, Finance & Fundraising Specialist, at (217) 337-2731 or We appreciate your support. Thank You!

Crisis Nursery, CASA, Children’s Advocacy Center Collaborate For April, Child Abuse Prevention Month

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Child abuse casts a shadow that lasts a lifetime. April is nationally recognized as Child Abuse Prevention Month and Crisis Nursery has a month full of events to raise awareness for the cause. 

A full calendar for the month is available here. Print one off for the refrigerator or add the dates to your calendar. We look forward to seeing you! Many news stories have appeared in the last couple days. Click here to check out the clips from Monday's WCIA Channel 3 Morning show.

First responder vehicles in Champaign County will display blue ribbon magnets as a united effort during Child Abuse Prevention month.

Special thanks to Busey for sponsoring an awareness billboard.

Miles for Smiles: Join Crisis Nursery's 'Fundracing' Team

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Crisis Nursery is urging area runners to add new purpose to their running by joining its Miles for Smiles team and raising money for the local non-profit organization while training for any 2013 event.

Crisis Nursery has seen recent success, expanding services and assisting more children and families in Champaign County. As the Nursery continues to grow, the need for financial resources grows as well. Miles for Smiles capitalizes on the current trend of running for charity and asks team members to fundraise while training. Building upon the local success of the Illinois Marathon, Crisis Nursery is launching the team and already has 10 committed team members.

Anyone can join Miles for Smiles, either as an individual or as part of a team of friends, family or co-workers. Runners can raise money for Crisis Nursery as part of any race, regardless of the length and the location. Register for your race of choice, and start training and “fundracing!” Each participant must commit to raising $200 for Crisis Nursery. Various benefits are offered to team members, including a wicking t-shirt, post-race celebrations, discounts to area fitness centers, prizes for top fundraisers and much more.

In 2009, a group of local attorneys and police officers who were training for the Illinois Marathon banded together to form “Team Law and Order.” They dedicated their running events to raising money for Crisis Nursery, and asked friends and family members to donate to the organization on their behalf. Their commitment inspired the Nursery to create a new “fundracing” initiative, Miles for Smiles.

All money raised from Miles for Smiles will directly support Crisis Nursery’s Safe Children and Strong Families programs. In addition to completing your race goal, participants will have the satisfaction of knowing that they are helping children and families in our community who have nowhere else to turn.

Stephanie Record, Executive Director of Crisis Nursery, has joined Miles for Smiles and will run her first 5K race as part of the team.

“I’m a first-time runner and this was added motivation for me to get involved,” said Record. “Miles for Smiles is a great new initiative for the Nursery and we’ve had lots of interest already. Knowing that you’re raising money for a beloved, local charity makes the training and many miles worth it.”


Crisis Nursery Launches dine&donate

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Crisis Nursery has launched a new fundraising initiative, dine&donate, which focuses on asking community members to eat, drink and give locally. The Nursery will partner with several locally-owned restaurants for the program and each restaurant has committed to donating a portion of each customer’s bill to Crisis Nursery for one business day.

Crisis Nursery has seen recent success, expanding services and assisting more children and families in Champaign County. As the Nursery continues to grow, the need for financial resources grows as well. This new program will encourage community members to dine locally and donate locally, all in the same outing.

Stephanie Record, Executive Director of Crisis Nursery, looks for dine&donate to be mutually beneficial for Crisis Nursery and the local restaurant scene.

“Like Crisis Nursery, these local restaurant owners depend on community members for support. In addition to helping the Nursery fulfill our mission, we’re confident this partnership will bring restaurants increased business and positive feedback. With the community’s participation, dine&donate can become a tradition for many years to come!”

Crisis Nursery markets the fundraiser and brings new business into these local establishments. The goal is to have one dine&donate event per month at various restaurants.

Five local restaurants have committed to dine&donate: D.P. Dough in Champaign, Village Inn Pizza and Great Impasta in Urbana and Butcher Boy Burgers and Java Connection in Rantoul. Other local restaurants are encouraged to get involved by calling the Nursery at 337-2731 for more details.

Owner of D.P. Dough, Steve Fiala, is eager for his dine&donate event, which will take place on Wednesday, January 30.

"I am really excited to be a part of dine&donate for Crisis Nursery. dine&donate is a great way to introduce new people to my restaurant while contributing to a local charity.  Crisis Nursery's mission is so important to the children and families of this community and I am happy to help support them however I can."

For more information, click here

Crisis Nursery Completes Numerous Security Upgrades

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Over the last four months, Crisis Nursery has completed numerous security upgrades to its facility and grounds. These improvements have made the local nonprofit agency more secure when caring for local children and families in emergency situations.

Crisis Nursery was awarded a grant from the State of Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) to complete these upgrades. This Emergency Shelter grant funded a variety of projects, including installing a privacy fence, an upgraded security system complete with new cameras both inside and outside the facility and enhanced lighting on Nursery grounds.

These upgrades have enhanced the security of Crisis Nursery, known as an “Island of Safety” in the community for children. 

“The security of the Nursery hadn’t been evaluated since the facility was completed in 2001,” said Stephanie Record, Executive Director of Crisis Nursery. “The Emergency Shelter Grant enabled us to make necessary improvements to our existing security systems. The safety of the children in our care is our primary focus. These upgrades will simply ensure that the kids, staff and volunteers of Crisis Nursery are protected.”

Miles for Smiles

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

If you’re looking for a way to stay active and motivated through the upcoming long, cold winter months, consider registering for the 2013 Illinois Marathon and joining Crisis Nursery’s Miles for Smiles Team!

Miles for Smiles offers you the opportunity to make your running experience more meaningful by not only accomplishing a personal goal, but raising money to help children and families in our community. In return, you’ll get a variety of team benefits, including a technical t-shirt, personal fundraising page, fundraising and training tips, post-race party and more. Continue checking the Miles for Smiles page for more details as they become available.

The Illinois Marathon is partnering with CrowdRise to make fundraising easy—and fun! For the month of November, when you start your personal fundraising page, you can be entered to win a $200 donation to Crisis Nursery, plus a $100 iTunes Gift Card! And all you have to do is start a fundraising page—you don’t even have to raise any money (although we hope you do!)

To sign-up to run on behalf of Crisis Nursery, go here, select “Create Your Own Fundraising Page” and follow the instructions. (Note: Registration to run an Illinois Marathon event is separate and can be done here.)  Once your page is set up, email CrowdRise with a link to your fundraising page plus the code ‘Celery Sand’ and you’ll be entered to win.

That’s it! Then you’re ready to start training and raising money to support Crisis Nursery as we fulfill our mission of preventing child abuse and neglect.

For questions about Miles for Smiles, email Bridget at or call 337-2731.

Contest ends on 12/1/12 and the winner will be contacted by email.  You must be 18 or older to win. This contest is organized by CrowdRise and further details and rules can be found here

Planning for the Future

Wednesday, June 06, 2012

After a year of research and discussion, the Crisis Nursery Board of Directors passed a five-year strategic plan for the organization. The plan took effect at the start of the Nursery’s fiscal year on July 1, 2012.

Built around three main goals of programming, development and Nursery facilities, the working plan guides the objectives of Crisis Nursery until 2017. Our primary goals focus on increasing programming to serve more families in need in Champaign County, establishing and developing revenue streams to support the programming needs of the Nursery and ensuring adequate facilities for delivering our mission.

“Several of the objectives cited in the plan have already been achieved,” said Stephanie Record, executive director of Crisis Nursery. “Our board started conceptualizing this plan last spring and work began immediately to accomplish some of the quickly attainable goals. We’re excited to implement innovative programming to advance our mission in Champaign County.”

Passing the plan in its entirety came on the heels of two objectives cited in the plan that were implemented in January 2012.  At that time, Crisis Nursery expanded services to include six-year old children. Since opening in 1984, the Nursery had served children ages birth through five. Additionally, the Nursery’s mission statement was updated to offer focus and direction while reflecting expanded services.

“This plan will help to guide our work for the foreseeable future,” explained Record. “Our programs have really grown in the last few years, as we work to serve families from all communities in Champaign County and from all walks of life. In order to increase our programming, we need to be able to sustain that growth from a financial and facilities standpoint. This is a very exciting time at Crisis Nursery.”

Click here for a complete summary of the 2012-17 Crisis Nursery Strategic Plan. For more information, contact the Nursery at (217) 337-2731

Buy Your Auction Tickets Today!

Monday, May 07, 2012

Join us for our 19th Annual Dinner & Auction on Friday, June 1 at the I Hotel. This is our biggest fundraiser of the year and tickets can be purchased for $75. Get yours today by calling 337-2731.

The RSVP deadline is fast approaching - Friday, May 11. After that, ticket prices increase to $100 per seat. Be sure to get your seats/tables reserved soon. It's typically a sold-out (not to mention SUPER fabulous) event! 

Doors open at 5:30 pm, as cocktails are served and silent auction bidding begins. Dinner is served at 7 pm, while the live auction starts about 8pm to close out the evening. Nearly 100 silent auction baskets are up for bid and our live auction baskets are always some of the best in town. For a sneak peak of some of our auction items, check out our Facebook page.

For more information and to learn more about our sponsors for the evening, click here

Need for Summer Volunteers

Monday, May 07, 2012

Summer can be a difficult time for Crisis Nursery while attempting to keep the volunteer schedule consistent and full throughout the week. Over 65% of our volunteer base is made up of UI students. This time of year, when they leave for summer break, our need for volunteers increases. 

The Nursery relies on over 150 volunteers each week to complete various tasks - everything from caring for children to gardening to making decisions for the organization's future as a board member. Our volunteers use their time and individual talents to make an impact on Crisis Nursery.

Wrap the Nursery

Monday, February 13, 2012

At noon on April 2, help us “Wrap the Nursery” and raise awareness about Child Abuse Prevention Month. We’ll join hands around Crisis Nursery as a sign of community support for our "Island of Safety" and the children and families we serve. Last year, over 100 people took part in this inaugural event, and we hope you’ll join us this year. Remember to wear blue!

Did we mention free lunch? The first 125 people will receive a free,boxed lunch courtesy of Einstein Bagels.

Miles for Smiles

Monday, February 13, 2012

Are you participating in an Illinois Marathon running event on April 27 or 28? Are you interested in raising money to help provide a safe haven for local children whose families are experiencing a crisis? Then you’ve come to the right place!

Join our Miles for Smiles Team and give new purpose to your training by raising money for Crisis Nursery. In addition to completing your race goal, you’ll have the satisfaction of knowing that you are helping children and families in our community who have nowhere else to turn.

Crisis Nursery creates an "Island of Safety" dedicated to the prevention of child abuse and neglect by providing 24-hour emergency care for children and support to strengthen families in crisis. We depend on generous businesses and individuals like you to ensure our doors stay open 24-hours a day, 365 days a year. The money you raise will go towards our Safe Children and Strong Families programs.

When at full capacity, it costs $1,800 a day to keep the Nursery open. Our overall goal for Miles for Smiles is to raise $12,600, enough to support a week at the Nursery! We encourage you to set an individual goal that you feel is appropriate and comfortable for you. Consider setting your sights high and sponsoring A Day at the Nursery by raising $1,800!

Are you ready?
1) Find more information on the Illinois Marathon races.

2) Visit Crisis Nursery’s FirstGiving site to start your own fundraising page. Click on the green “Start Fundraising” box in the upper right-hand corner, and follow the steps. You will be asked to register with FirstGiving and customize your fundraising page - personalize it by uploading a picture, adding details about your race, and sharing why you decided to run for Crisis Nursery.

3) Invite family, friends, and colleagues to support your training and fundraising efforts. Click here for a sample solicitation letter/email. Some unique fundraising ideas include: keep a training log online and ask followers to donate $.50/$1/$5 for each mile run…consider asking for donations in lieu of a birthday or anniversary gift… many workplaces will sponsor you or match donations… ask all of your Facebook friends to donate a small amount… the options are limitless!

4) Train for and run the Illinois Marathon 5K on April 27, or 10K, half-marathon, marathon, or marathon relay on April 28, 2012!

5) Feel great about finishing your race, and all the smiles you’ve helped bring to a child’s face!

For questions or more information, contact Special Events Coordinator Bridget Frerichs at or 337-2731.

Crisis Nursery Increases Service Age to Six, Updates Mission Statement

Monday, January 09, 2012

Crisis Nursery has expanded its services and is now serving children ages birth through six years old. Additionally, the Nursery’s mission statement has been updated to offer focus and direction while reflecting expanded services.

Since its inception in 1983, Crisis Nursery served children birth though five years of age. The expansion to include six year olds was a strategic change that allows families safe shelter for children until their seventh birthday.

"Serving six year olds is something we’ve been considering for awhile,” explains Stephanie Record, executive director of Crisis Nursery. “The change allows us to bridge the gap between services for school-aged children. Now, when a child ages out of our care, they are being assisted by the school system and the teachers, counselors and social workers that help at-risk youth. This is a great move for us and we’re prepared."

The Nursery announced this change in August and has spent the final months of 2011 preparing for the change. Generous community members have donated toys, books, games and clothes to care for older children.

Also, Crisis Nursery’s mission statement has been slightly changed and now offers a more thorough glimpse as to the services provided at the Nursery. It now reads: “Crisis Nursery creates an ‘Island of Safety’ dedicated to the prevention of child abuse and neglect by providing 24-hour emergency care for children and support to strengthen families in crisis."

"It was important for us to incorporate ‘24-hour emergency care’ into our mission statement,” said Record. “The very essence of what we do is helping children and families around the clock, regardless of the situation. We needed our mission to reflect that. We also wanted to touch on the support we offer to strengthen families in the community. Our Strong Families program has really expanded in recent years with home visits and support groups. We are known for our emergency shelter but these are also a large part of the services we provide to stabilize families in crisis.”

For more information, contact Crisis Nursery at (217) 337-2731.

The Tie That Binds

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Rayme Dorsey, of Penfield, IL, was able to “give like no one else” this holiday season with Dave Ramsey's Giving Challenge. Rayme shared a tragic yet amazing story with the national radio host about her friend, Brittany Babb, who was killed in a car accident in December 2008. Brittany's family and friends planned a golf outing in her memory and have since donated nearly $30,000 to Crisis Nursery.

Rayme's story was chosen as a finalist from thousands of entries received from around the world. And on Tuesday, December 13, friends and family joined Rayme at Crisis Nursery to find out if she would be selected as a winner. The prize, $5,000, could then be donated to the charity of her choice. After an hour of reminiscing and waiting in anticipation, the folks from The Dave Ramsey Show came in, Publisher’s-Clearing-House-style, and presented Rayme with an oversized check made out to Crisis Nursery!

Through tears and a big grin, Rayme recounted her story live on the radio to over 4 million listeners, explaining how she and friends came together to remember and honor Brittany by donating to a charity that shared their friend’s  love of children. We’re humbled to be part of this amazing story and so thankful to be the recipient of Rayme’s generosity. Her positive outlook and dedication to keeping her friend’s memory alive is inspiring.

Unwrap a Smile this Holiday Season

Monday, October 31, 2011

Help Crisis Nursery families Unwrap a Smile this holiday season! This program takes the place of our Adopt-a-Family program, pairing generous individuals, families and businesses with children in need of gifts around the holidays. Donors are matched with a family to purchase gifts for the children. What a great way to spread holiday cheer and the true spirit of the season!

All families have been matched with donors for the 2011 holiday season. However, the Nursery has other needs this time of year. For more information, contact Family Specialist Ann Ambrose at or 337-2730.

Tickets On Sale Now for the 8th Annual Gala Wine Tasting

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Sun Singer Wine & Spirits celebrates their 8th Anniversary with a Gala Wine and Spirits Tasting. The event will be held Wednesday October 19th from 5 to 8:30 p.m. at the I Hotel & Conference Center in Champaign.

Spend an enchanted evening at the I-Hotel & Conference Center socializing and sampling over 200 wines, spirits and beers from around the globe.  Generous discounts will be available on wine ordered the night of the event.

The Gala will feature a silent auction where you will enjoy bidding on wine, wine accessories and additional hand selected auction items donated by local businesses. Many of these unique and original items will be available for auction only at the Gala.

Sun Singer is proud to team with  Crisis Nursery for this year’s Gala. As part of the $20 entry fee benefiting Crisis Nursery, all attendees will receive a souvenir Stölzle crystal wine glass. We hope you will be able to attend and help Crisis Nursery continue to create an ‘Island of Safety’ in our community. Tickets can be purchased in advance at Sun Singer, Crisis Nursery or at the door.

Local Star Alison Krauss Plans Concert to Benefit Crisis Nursery

Friday, August 19, 2011

Bluegrass and country star Alison Krauss will return to her hometown on Wednesday, October 5 with a performance to benefit Crisis Nursery. Alison Krauss and Union Station, featuring Jerry Douglass, will perform an 8 p.m. show at the historic Virginia Theatre in downtown Champaign.

Tickets are sold out! Check out this recent News Gazette article to read the details.  

“We couldn’t be more surprised and thrilled by this news,” said Stephanie Record, executive director of Crisis Nursery. “We were notified on Monday about the possibility of such a show and the past few days have been a whirlwind of details. We are delighted to hear of Alison’s passion for Crisis Nursery and that we have been chosen to receive the proceeds from this concert.  This is very exciting for Crisis Nursery and will be an incredible event for our community.”

Krauss’ most recent triumph is her 2007 certified platinum album Raising Sand, a masterful collaboration with Robert Plant and producer T Bone Burnett. She gathered a total of six Grammy® Awards with the effort, including Album of the Year and Song of the Year, bringing her total to 26 Grammys.  Krauss and Union Station just released Paper Airplane in April 2011, full of all-new recordings and their first album since 2004.

"We are thrilled to be teaming up with Crisis Nursery on this extremely special concert.  Alison has a passion for the work that Crisis Nursery does, and we are honored that the proceeds from this show will benefit the families who are touched by that work." said Michael Corcoran of Borman Entertainment, Alison’s management team. 

More information can be found by calling Crisis Nursery at (217) 337-2731.

CarX Crazy K

Monday, August 08, 2011

On your mark…get set…GO! Be sure to sign up for the CarX Crazy K, coming on August 27 to the Champaign County Fairgrounds. This great community event combines running, obstacles, bands & charities - doesn't get much better than that!

Check out this great News Gazette article that details the race and founder, Parham Parastaran. Also, take a look at Parham and Kristen Bosch, Crisis Nursery’s Marketing and Special Events Director, on WCIA Channel 3 chatting about the event.

The CarX Crazy K puts a twist on the traditional 5K run, all for the sake of raising more money for charity in a single day than Champaign County has ever seen before. All proceeds from this first-time community event will benefit eight local non-profit organizations, including Crisis Nursery.

Participants will race over, under and around five kilometers of varying obstacles and challenges at the Champaign County Fairgrounds on Saturday, August 27. After completing the course, participants are encouraged to hang out and join the after party that is sure to make racers forget any troubles they had on the course. Three great local bands will add to the fun – come out to see the Brat Pack, the Boat Drunks and Sister Groove.

Don't want to run? Come have fun! Buy a day pass for $20 and experience the live music, great food and fun atmosphere. Call the Nursery at 337-2731 or stop by to get your ticket today!

For more information, or to register, visit

Vote for Crisis Nursery!

Monday, August 01, 2011

Crisis Nursery is participating in the Make My Non-Profit Run Better contest for a chance to win an office technology makeover from RK Dixon valued at up to $15,000. The grand prize winner will receive office technology equipment – printers, scanners, copy machines, etc.

This is another great opportunity for us and the process couldn’t be easier.  Click here and vote for Crisis Nursery until 5 p.m. on Monday, August 8. You can vote once a day, so please vote daily. The more votes, the better chance we have to win – it’s that simple.

And don’t forget to follow Crisis Nursery on Facebook to keep up with all the contest details. Happy voting and thank you for your support!

The Swisher Family Proudly Sponsors August 1, 2011

Monday, August 01, 2011

A very special Thank You goes to the Swisher family of Tolono for donating $1800 and sponsoring August 1, 2011. The Swisher Family is the first participant in this year's "A Day at the Nursery" program.

What a difference a day can make…especially in the life of a child. Like the Swishers, you can provide an "Island of Safety" for a full day by participating in Crisis Nursery’s “A Day at the Nursery” program.  Select a day that has special meaning to you and celebrate or commemorate by sponsoring that day at the Nursery.  Your gift of $1800 covers the Nursery’s operating expenses for one 24-hour day.

We appreciate their sponsorship and hope that others will be encouraged to follow their lead.  Be assured, you will provide an "Island of Safety" for many children on your special day.

For more information, click here.

Auction Items Up For Bid

Monday, May 23, 2011

It's that time of year again - Crisis Nursery is proud to announce its 18th Annual Dinner and Auction. This year's event will be held Friday, June 17 at the I Hotel & Conference Center in Champaign. The festivities kick off at 5:30pm and the night promises to be great fun and a huge success. Last year's event was sold out and raised over $100,000 to help children and families in Champaign County!

Interested in a sneak peak of live and silent auction baskets?
This year, we have 77 silent auction baskets that will be available the night of this great event! These items range in value from $25 to $600. You'll find everything from trips to Indianapolis, St. Louis and Chicago to various wine baskets to one-of-a-kind pieces of art to autographed sports memorabilia!

Eighteen live auction baskets will also be up for bid. These include a trip for 10 to a private condo in Puerto Vallarta, catered parties for you & your friends, a week's stay for six in the Bahamas, makeovers for your home and garden and MUCH MORE!

Maybe you'd like to bid now on our exclusive online auction items?
For the first time ever, we're placing some auction items exclusively on our website. If you cannot attend the event in person, or if you want to insure that you will be the highest bidder on a special item, now is your opportunity to bid and buy! For the next three weeks, we'll be adding online auction items, so be sure to check back and place those bids!

Here's how it works...If one of these items listed below interests you, click on the title for an expanded description. There, you'll also find the opening bid on the item. Bids can be placed by posting a comment under the description. In order to constitute a valid bid, each new bid must contain a valid email address (so we can reach the winning bidder). Only whole dollar bids will be honored. Bids will be accepted until 8 a.m. on Friday, June 17, at which time the highest, winning bidder will be determined and notified.

All items and bids will be monitored by Crisis Nursery. Questions? Contact Kristen Bosch at or 217-337-2731.

Crisis Nursery Needs Your Help!

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Governor Pat Quinn's proposed budget will eliminate all funding for the Crisis Nurseries in Illinois! Like other social service agencies across the State, Crisis Nursery’s funding has been cut, but our line item for 2012 has been zeroed out -meaning the majority of our state funding for the upcoming year, nearly $68,000, will be cut.  In addition to these cuts, another $12,500 is projected to be cut from a state grant that funds homeless services through the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity.

What does this mean for Crisis Nursery locally?

Our Safe Children program is available for families who are experiencing a crisis/emergency and have no other resources to help them.  In fiscal year 2010, our Safe Children program provided 23,868 hours of crisis care and served 612 children.

Crisis Nursery’s Strong Families program offers individual and group services to families who have used the Safe Children’s program, as well as being open to the community. Resources and services help families dealing with perinatal depression, kinship care, homelessness and teen parenting, to name a few. Last year, our Strong Families program staff conducted 661 home visits.

The projected cuts would result in a loss of nearly 9% of the funding for Crisis Nursery.  This would mean the loss of over 2000 crisis care hours, with 50-55 fewer children being served. In addition, 50-60 home visits would be cut from our Strong Families program.

The community impact would be wide-reaching:
• For many of the families we serve, the availability of Crisis Nursery made the difference between keeping their children safe and out of harm’s way, or taking the child out of their family, home and neighborhood.
• Children would be in situations that place them at risk of abuse and neglect.
• Homeless children using our services could be turned away without a warm place to sleep for the night.
• Families trying to stabilize their lives would not have direct parenting support and home visits. 

How can you help?

Crisis Nursery is asking you to talk to legislators and to rally support as we battle this budgeting process.  Tell lawmakers now that Crisis Nurseries in the State of Illinois prevent abuse and neglect. Tell them that services for the most vulnerable families in Illinois should not be cut. Click here to submit a pre-written letter via email to Illinois legislators in your district.

Thank you for your help and continued support of Crisis Nursery! You do make a difference!

Welcome to Our New Website!

Friday, January 14, 2011

LRS Team presents Crisis Nursery with really big check!

Back in August, Crisis Nursery won the LRS Web Solutions BIG Website Makeover Contest. We spent the next five months perfecting what you see now – our new website!

It all started with a blurb in a non-profit organization mass email received on August 3, 2010. Right there in the “Did You Know?” section, it read: “LRS Web Solutions is launching a website makeover contest where the public will nominate and vote for a nonprofit organization to receive a complete $10,000 makeover. Nomination deadline TOMORROW (8/4)!”

Tomorrow? Wow! Let’s get to work!

So, we completed the application process and crossed our fingers. And then just two short days later we got a visit from an LRS representative that delivered some great news: we had been selected as one of 10 finalists in the contest that gathered more than 50 nominations!  We were told that in order to receive the grand prize, a new website worth $10,000, Crisis Nursery needed to receive the most online votes by midnight, August 20th.

Upon being named a finalist, Stephanie Record, Executive Director at Crisis Nursery, said, “We have been looking for ways to improve our web presence. Winning a new $10,000 website would certainly do that, while also allowing us to put the funds designated for a website towards other programs at Crisis Nursery and provide needed support for children and families in Champaign County.”

That’s when the work really started. We sent out press releases and mass emails encouraging daily votes. We did radio spots asking for the public’s help. We told all of our friends, families and colleagues about the voting. And we urged you to do the same. This went on for two weeks until…

The news came. Well, maybe we should say, then the whole LRS crew came, carrying balloons and a big check, wearing huge smiles and delivering great news. We won! Crisis Nursery was named the winner of the $10,000 Big Website Makeover Contest sponsored by LRS Web Solutions. The Nursery received approximately 40% of the final total or nearly 5,000 of the 12,000 votes cast. 

That was on August 23, 2010. And on January 28, 2011 we bring you the final product. Our new, improved, BIG Website Makeover.

Crisis Nursery and the wonderful team over at LRS Web Solutions spent countless hours perfecting this website into what you see now. LRS was amazing to work with and are true professionals. Their expertise and creativity made our functional and design dreams come true.  This new website provided a much-needed digital facelift, while also presenting new ways to reach area families that can benefit from our services. We hope you like what you see here.  We sure do.

One last thing – Thank You! Thanks to each and every one of you that voted for Crisis Nursery during the two-week voting period. Thank you for your support and encouragement. This website was not only made possible by LRS Web Solutions but it was made possible by you!

The Big Website Makeover competition was sponsored by LRS Web Solutions, a division of Levi, Ray & Shoup, Inc. LRS Web Solutions provides complete website solutions and network support to businesses and organizations. Their service suite includes web design, application development, search engine optimization, multimedia, hosting, and technology support.  Located in Springfield, Illinois, LRS Web Solutions employs a team of over 20 specialists in the areas of graphic design, web design, web development, programmers, project managers and customer support. For more information, please visit

A New Year, A New Nursery

Friday, January 14, 2011

Local organizations continue to face challenges with funding and in meeting the needs of the clients they serve on a daily basis.  Crisis Nursery has faced these same challenges.   However, with the help of a passionate team of staff members and volunteers -- both veterans and newcomers -- we have achieved new heights in all areas of operation.  Crisis Nursery is definitely in the forefront of service providers in a community which is already blessed with many wonderful community resources. 

Our programs have grown to support the ever changing needs of the children and families we serve.  We have added the Beyond Blue program for mothers experiencing perinatal depression.  Our focus is on families living in rural Champaign County, who experience feelings of isolation and often have limited access to resources.  Crisis Nursery also recently added pet therapy for the children we care for who have experienced trauma in their lives.  Many of these children are most trusting of these four-legged volunteers.  The exciting thing about Crisis Nursery is that we have the flexibility to try such new approaches, when necessary and appropriate, to meet the needs of families.  The results for both of these initiatives have exceeded expectations.

Through a variety of contests and with the help of our many community supporters, the Nursery has been able to give the building itself a much-needed facelift.  We have had a complete administrative office makeover, free of charge.  The children’s areas and play areas have been brightened up with the help of volunteer time, talent and treasures to make sure the job was completed successfully.  Now when you walk in the doors of the Nursery, you can’t help but smile at the clean, welcoming environment the Nursery has to offer.

Our final hurdle of late has been to complete the transformation of the Crisis Nursery website.  This was made possible by LRS Web Solutions when we won their “BIG Website Makeover Contest” last summer.  We are thrilled to unveil this to you now and hope you agree it is another wonderful enhancement to the Nursery. 

With the website change also comes some name changes for our programs and titles of staff positions.  At the Nursery we want everything to truly reflect what it is we are providing to the children and families in our communities. 

The Crisis Care Program will now be called the Safe Children Program and will be supported by our Children’s Specialists (formerly Children’s Workers); Children’s Support Specialists (formerly Lead Children’s Workers); and Crisis Advocates (formerly Family Workers). 

The Post Crisis Care Program will now be referred to as the Strong Families Program.  The primary support for this program comes from our Family Specialists.

As you can see there are many exciting changes happening at Crisis Nursery and we are very excited to bring you along on this journey with us.  Please call anytime to schedule a tour.  You will see firsthand the impact Crisis Nursery has on the children and families we serve!