Peter Castle Family Resource Center
555 Avenue D, Rochester, NY 14621
Phone: 339-3200 or 339-3214
The Peter Castle Family Resource Center was founded in 1996 in the northeast area of the city, in honor of Peter Castle who dedicated his life as a teacher in the Rochester City School District. With his tragic death in 1983, his family and friends established the Peter S. Castle Foundation, which provided support for the renovation of the space to house the Family Resource Center. The center is attached to the Lincoln Branch Library on Joseph Avenue and Avenue D and is adjacent to the Rochester Toy Library. Located in this diverse city neighborhood, Peter Castle Family Resource Center increases opportunities for early childhood development and parenting education to families in a supportive and welcoming environment.
Current programs and services include the following:
Early Childhood Education opportunities:
A daily Universal Pre-Kindergarten class for 4-year olds is offered 5 mornings a week (9:00 – 11:30 am) in collaboration with the Rochester City School District. It is an integrated classroom in partnership with Stepping Stones Learning Center which brings enhanced special services and expertise to the program.
A developmentally appropriate class for 2 and 3-year olds is also provided 2 mornings a week (Monday and Tuesday, 9:00 – 11:30 am) through the continuing support of the family of Jim Ely, a former Board member, and through the Jim Ely Trust Fund administered by the Community Foundation.
Parent Education groups:
Weekly Opportunities are offered for participation in evidence-based parenting curricula, such as The Incredible Years and Effective Black Parenting Program, in the supportive atmosphere of the Family Resource Center. Linda James is the Family Development Coordinator for this site and coordinates the Skip Generations Program for kinship caregivers, as well. A parent group is offered mid-day on Wednesday 11:00 am – 1:00 pm. Child care is provided during the time of the group.
An educational support group specifically for fathers is also offered weekly at this center. Derrick Hazle facilitates the Fathers’ Program here on Tuesday evenings from 5:30-7:30 pm.
Childcare is provided at no cost to participants during attendance in these parent groups.
The Peter Castle center invites family participation in parent-child events several times a year. Our collaboration with our local libraries promotes literacy at both centers, and the family events often involve a literacy focus. Light refreshments are usually provided at special events.
Parents are invited and encouraged to volunteer in the classrooms and to give input to the program. There are opportunities for parents to participate in leadership roles, such as the developing Community Café and the local Parent Leadership Training Institute.
Parents As Teachers program:
Parents as Teachers (PAT) – This is an evidence-based program focusing on early childhood development and healthy parent-child interaction. It involves monthly home visits, group connections, early screening, and resources for families prenatally and up to the child’s entry into Kindergarten. Peter Castle FRC allows us to offer co-location of URMC’s Baby Love Program staff (Social Worker and Health Project Counselors) in our partnership with them in the Parents As Teachers – Right From the Start program supported by the United Way.
Parents As Advocates – Supportive home visits are offered to families with children in school, from Kindergarten to grade 2. Visits encourage continued involvement in the early education of their children, partnership with their child’s school, and support in parenting and advocacy for their children.
All programs offered by Family Resource Centers meet the standards of the Council on Accreditation (COA).
Peter Castle Family Resource Center has been an important part of the 31-year history of Family Resource Centers in Rochester. FRC became part of Crestwood Children’s Center, an affiliate of Hillside Family of Agencies, in 2005.
Mary Jo Brach, Service Director, Family Resource Centers of Crestwood
585-436-0370 x 312