GRCDC’s Responsibility in Fighting for Justice

June 1, 2020

Dear GRCDC Families,

As a school leader, and (just as importantly) as a mama, it is hard to put into words the feelings and experiences of the last two weeks in our country and our city.  Our shared values at the Grand Rapids Child Discovery Center are inspiration, potential, connection, and equity.  All of these values are challenged in the face of police brutality, racial violence, and senseless loss of life.  We, as a community, cannot be silent in such times.  I want GRCDC families of color to know that our school community stands with you and against oppression and violence and I want to challenge our white families to continue the work of education, activism, and acts of solidarity that are so important for change.

Talking to children about the killing of George Floyd, the actions of Amy Cooper, the protests across the country, and the historical and current context of all of this can seem daunting as a parent.  However, at GRCDC we hold the image of the child as strong, full of potential, and powerful.  We know that children can grapple with complex ideas and are wired for justice.  We also know that in our silence, children will fill in the blanks.  Children of all races need to have conversations with their families, caregivers, and educators to process what they are seeing and hearing.

Here are some resources that you may find helpful:


In addition to talking with and supporting your children, this is a difficult time for adults as well.  The trauma of COVID-19 has been compounded in many of our families and stress is high.  Please remember, help is available:

Resource List WMCAT has created a robust list of resources available in West Michigan and beyondCategories on this list include: 

  • Food/Meal Info 
  • Shelter/Housing Resources 
  • Utilities + Internet Resources 
  • Volunteer Opportunities 
  • Recursos en Español 
  • Links to fun and free activities

Also, GRCDC staff are here to help support you and your children, as well.  Please fill out one of these surveys to request support.  OR, just email me or call/text me and I will connect you with resources for what you need- heynel@childdiscoverycenter.org or 517-206-3868.

  • Social Emotional Support Direct Request – Please fill out if your child could use a one time or more regular check in with social/emotional support from school staff. This is not from a professional counselor or therapist, but rather a member of staff checking in and supporting as requested or necessary.
  • Mutual Aid Request/Offer Survey – Take this survey if you are seeking assistance or connection or if you want to offer assistance or connection.

GRCDC families- you are loved, you are missed, and you are heard.  Our work continues.


Lisa Heyne