One of the highlights of the year in South Carolina’s Upstate returns in mid-September and it’s a must-do for anyone who loves food, wine, and music. Now in its 16th year, euphoria is a unique four-day festival featuring a plethora of Michelin-starred chefs, exclusive tasting events, cooking demonstrations, wine seminars, multi-course dinners and live music concerts.
They are more than just maps, pie charts, and bar graphs — they are the story of a city, representing real people who live, work and learn in Greenville. How far are people driving to work each day, and how many of them drive alone? Where are new residents coming from? Where are child care deserts, or areas with workers likely to be impacted by global trends of automation and artificial intelligence? How specialized is the workforce compared to the rest of the nation?
When Stephanie Warren moved to South Carolina in 2017, she sought a better life and a fresh start for herself and her eight-year-old daughter. After living with her father while she got on her feet, the 29-year-old single mother from Connecticut, who works for a fast casual restaurant, set up a new home for her young family of two in a low-income apartment complex in Taylors.
“I have to take a deep breath; I gotta catch my breath before I respond.” Amanda, a mother of 2 preschoolers and one 3rd grader, isn’t running a marathon. She is practicing intentional breathing exercises that she picked up in a local Triple P workshop. “Triple P, the Positive Parenting Program, provides parents and caregivers with tools to help them manage stressful situations and to help model positive behaviors for their children”, says Nicole Sheppard, Greenville First Steps’ Triple P coordinator.
When Kim realized she was expecting her first child, she immediately began researching childcare options. “We looked everywhere. We were on so many waiting lists and no one was calling us back, and the ones who did were way too expensive.” Kim explained, “it was truly depressing. We finally had to make a difficult choice: do I return to work, and end up paying $200/week for childcare, or stay home and watch our child?”
With schools closed, most businesses shut down, and many families attempting to conduct work and education from home, the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted our daily lives in unprecedented ways. Despite this “new normal,” for the 36,000 children under the age of five in Greenville County, it is essential that we continue to provide high-quality home-based child care services so they can receive the early childhood development they need to thrive throughout their live
August has arrived, which means 75,000 Greenville County students will begin the annual first week of school ritual. Like their parents before them, these students will prepare for a new year of learning. However, unlike any generations before them, these families have to adjust to the “new normal” of self-directed learning and limited school schedules.