This year MountainStar Family Relief Nursery celebrates 20 years of providing effective, relationship-based services for vulnerable young children and their families. Staff work hard to keep young children safe, strengthen families and help parents to be successful in five Central Oregon communities - Bend, Madras, Prineville, La Pine and Redmond. They have documented success at preventing child abuse and neglect. This work is especially important due to elevated family stress related to the pandemic.
This year is a turning point for MountainStar in a couple of ways, as founding Executive Director, Tim Rusk, has announced that he will depart his position at the end of August, "Working at Mountain Star has been the highlight of my career," says Rusk. "I have loved working with others throughout Central Oregon to ensure babies, toddlers and families have our support when they need it most. With an organization that now spans three counties and five communities in a strong place, I am ready to pass the baton to a new Executive Director to lead MountainStar staff, board, families and our many contributors into the future."
Under Rusk's leadership, MountainStar jumped into fundraising in 2003 with its Heart & Sole shoe sale held at the Old Mill District featuring 2,000 pairs of donated designer women's shoes. In 2005, MountainStar held its first Children's Expedition Luncheon and raised over $250,000 in donations and pledges to support services to families and children.
Community members are encouraged to visit MountainStar's website for more information about the organization and services, to make a donation and to share their own stories of involvement over the past 20 years: https://mtstar.org/