KIDZMANIA Successfully Promotes Awareness of Service Providers and Businesses that Support Strengthening Families and Child Development

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Linking Families and Communities just completed the second annual KIDZMANIA in Fort Dodge, IA where a wide range of community service providers and businesses gathered together to provide a day of fun and excitement for the entire family. The event not only promoted family fun but it also provided that opportunity to meet first hand the agencies and businesses that support strengthening families.

Kidzmania with Tricia

“Our event grew this year with more sponsors, larger variety of activities and educational projects and more families.” states Elizabeth Stanek, Executive Director of Linking Families and Communities.

KIDZMANIA accomplishes two major goals each year. It not only provides an excellent opportunity for families to participate in fun and safe activities but it also promotes a key priority of providing access to resources that assist in strengthening families.

Linking Families and Communities along with the United Way of Greater Fort Dodge partner in this event to offer the opportunity to become better aware of what is available and seek out assistance in a family friendly environment. Families not only bond with each other by spending special family time, they also participate in fun and educational activities where kids learn have fun and experience things that they would not normally experience.

Events like this allow parents to interact with their kids and learn about the resources in the community and make those informal connections with service providers and businesses. The idea is that it will be easier for parents to pick up the phone for assistance or information because they will have made that connection.    

“Our event grew this year as we had more sponsors, a larger variety of activities and educational projects and more families.” states Elizabeth Stanek, Executive Director of Linking Families and Communities. “We are now collecting data to see if connections made at KIDZMANIA are resulting in referrals.”

Early Learning for children from zero to five and their families is the focus of Linking Families and Communities. With explosive brain development in the early years, it is critical that all children have the best start possible. Brain development sets the stage for a child’s intelligence, emotional stability, personality and their lifelong trajectory. Brain development doesn't happen on its own; it must be nurtured and stimulated.

This is why the bond between parent and child is so important. In fact, the family bond is essential during a child’s early years as it is directly related to the child's vocabulary development, reading readiness and eventual academic achievement.

Young children need secure and nurturing homes in which to live and thrive. Parents are the key to a child’s foundation and their child’s success. Being a good parent is most important thing a person can do because they have a direct impact on brain development and lifelong achievement.

KIDZMANIA is just one event but it has a strong impact on families and the community that continues throughout the year. As an annual event, it also renews this important message to provide that strong emotional bond in families.

Linking Families and Communities is a recipient of Early Childhood Iowa funds and covers Webster, Calhoun and Pocahontas counties in Iowa. The office is located at 822 Central Avenue, Fort Dodge, IA. More information is available at

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Elizabeth Stanek

Cheryl O'Hern
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since: 04/2011
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