- Early Childhood Education Program
The Early Childhood program at Operation Breakthrough earned national accreditation in 2005 from the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC.) It provides hands-on learning experiences, supportive teacher interactions and language-rich environments for 266 children between the ages of 6 weeks and 6 years. Developmentally appropriate programming is guided by Head Start with the goal of preparing children for success in school. Our program year begins in August every year. The Early Childhood program operates weekdays from 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. to enable parents to work full time and support their families.
- Before and After School Program
About 100 children, ages 5 to 13, come to Operation Breakthrough before and after school and summer vacations for tutoring, homework help, book club meetings, supervised outdoor play, peer support groups and other special programs. Through our talent exploration program, children get the chance to develop their talents in special interest areas such as tennis, computers, dance, choir, soccer and art.
- Summer Enrichment Program
Operation Breakthrough provides a full summer of fun and educational activities for about 120 children, ages 5 to 13. Activities include extensive reading programs, swimming lessons, field trips, art classes, basketball and soccer clinics. Click here to support the Summer Enrichment Program.
Community volunteers visit the center regularly to read one-on-one with children, help with schoolwork and to give time and attention to children who need a friend.
- Literacy Program
Literacy is a central focus throughout Operation Breakthrough, from the infant classrooms through the School-Age Village. Every classroom has its own library, and Story Time happens all the time. The school-age children read after school and all morning every day in the summer. They take computer quizzes over each book to determine how well they comprehend what they have read.
- Violence Prevention
Through the Second Step program, children 4 through 13 participate in weekly anti-violence lessons that use role playing and discussion to teach about sharing, compomise and empathy.
- USDA-Approved Meal Program
The children are served a hot breakfast and lunch and an afternoon snack each day. These meals are the main source of nutrition for many children.
- Children's Mercy Clinic
A Pediatrician, Nurse Practitioner and other health care professionals diagnose and treat children, perform well-child checkups and screenings and offer health education for parents in an on-site clinic, operated by Children's Mercy Hospital.
In collaboration with the Kansas City Health Department and Children's Mercy Hospital, immunization clinics are held monthly for the children at Operation Breakthrough, which has resulted in a near 100% immunization rate at our center.
- Dental Clinic
Professional dentists offer free cleanings, preventative and corrective care for Operation Breakthrough's children in our on-site dental clinic.
- Speech and Language Therapy
Our children experience speech and language delays at twice the rate of the general population. Master's level Speech and Language Pathologists provide therapy for our children birth to five years of age on site at Operation Breakthrough. This early intervention helps children with speech and language impairments in meeting developmental milestones.
Licensed clinical therapists provide individual and group play therapy to children who have experienced loss, abuse, witnessed violence or other traumatic events in their homes or neighborhoods. The department also has a full time music therapist who provides classroom, group and individual interventions. In addition, our child therapy department partners with the University of Kansas Medical Center Outpatient Psychiatry Department to provide a weekly onsite outpatient clinic for children to receive psychiatric assessments and medication therapy, if needed.
Operation Breakthrough has one licensed clinical therapist on staff to provide therapy and support for parents struggling with stress and other mental health issues. The adult therapist offers both individual, family and group therapy for the adults. Staff therapists also offer parents the opportunity to learn how to strengthen their bonds with their children through playful activities and family interventions.
- Occupational and Physical Therapy
Therapists from Kansas University provide occupational therapy for toddlers and preschoolers on-site at Operation Breakthrough. This early intervention helps children with delayed motor skills and/or sensory problems overcome issues before entering school.
- Family Nurturing Program
Through the parent education program, Operation Breakthrough offers classes on topics in child development and household management. Additionally, support groups are held to help parents cope with the challenges of child-rearing. Operation Breakthrough also has four family advocates on staff who work one-on-one with parents to create the best possible environment for their child's healthy development.
- Adult Therapy
Operation Breakthrough has a licensed clinical therapist on staff to provide therapy and support for parents struggling with stress and other mental health issues. The adult therapist offers both individual, family and group therapy for the adults. Staff therapists also offer parents the opportunity to learn how to strengthen their bonds with their children through playful activities and family interventions.
- Emergency Aid to Families
Operation Breakthrough provides groceries from its food pantry, clothing, diapers, furniture, household supplies and utility assistance to families in need. With community support, the Center also meets families' seasonal needs for items such as school supplies and holiday gifts.
Along with supporting families in obtaining and maintaining safe and stable housing within the Kansas City community, Operation Breakthrough currently has a permanent, supportive housing program for 6 families. The Program is designed to promote healthy family relationships, positive mental health, and support within a community in a drug and alcohol free environment.
- Women Infants and Children (WIC)
is a service offered on-site. WIC provides nutritional education, counseling and assessments for pregnant, breastfeeding and non-breastfeeding women and their children under the age of 5. Our mothers receive vouchers for milk, formula and cereals.