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Strengthening Families

Our youth services department provides a wide array of child care and activity options to preschool and school aged children. Some of our programs include Kids Quest, Kindergarten Academic Preparedness Program, Girls Night In, School Days Out, FEATS, and our in-house Early Learning Center. For more information about our programs please call 785.233.1750.

“Children must be taught how to think, not what to think.” -Margaret Mead

Early Learning Center

YWCA Northeast Kansas is on a mission to provide excellent and affordable childcare in a fun, enriching environment. Our goal is to bolster positive social, emotional and academic development — all while promoting school-readiness.

Preschoolers at YWCA Northeast Kansas meet rigorous Early Learning Standards indicating school readiness, eliminating the education gap regardless of race, economics or culture.

YWCA’s mission of “Eliminating Racism and Empowering Women” starts with our youngest participants – children in our classrooms benefit from a supportive “Love and Logic” curriculum and an emphasis on diversity and inclusion in all of our care procedures. To learn more about openings in our Early Learning Center, contact Nevaeh Edwards, Early Learning Center Director: elcdirector@ywcaneks.org

ELC Parent Handbook


COVID-19 Response Update:

The Early Learning Center remains open for children of essential personnel. We provide calm and routine during these difficult times. We are currently accepting applications for children ages one (and walking) to pre-K. Please contact our ELC Director at (785) 233-1750 for more information.

ELC Enrollment Application
Without the YWCA I have no idea how I would be able to support little L. and myself. I am grateful every single day for the work you do! Because of you all, I can drop my child off every morning free of the burden of worry. I have no doubt L. is safe, loved, cared for, watched over, respected, observed, nurtured and encouraged.
Mother of a child in our Early Learning Center

Kids Quest Summer Camp

YWCA Kids Quest Summer Camp provides a safe, secure, positive and nurturing environment for children in Kindergarten through 5th grade. Children grow, discover, build confidence, enrich education and form friendships in our program.

Where: Whitson Elementary School, 1725 SW Arnold Ave, Topeka

When: June 6 – July 29, 2022, Monday – Friday 7 AM to 5:30 PM

Weekly Tuition: $125 per student per week with a $20 enrollment fee ($30 for 2 or more children), plus a $55 activity fee. Breakfast, lunch, and a snack are provided daily.

Registration Opens March 16th

Starting March 16th (March 14th for current Kids Quest families), you can pick up an application packet in-person at the YWCA Northeast Kansas office from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. We are located at 225 SW 12th Street in Downtown Topeka. Park and enter on the north side of the building. 

All activity fees and the first week of tuition are due along with completed application packet prior to enrollment. Space is limited to the first 45 enrollments. Enrollment is final once confirmed by the KQ Coordinator. Part-time enrollment is accepted IF space allows. A limited number of scholarships are available for those who qualify. Contact KQ Coordinator for scholarship information.

Questions? Email Maggie Babinka-Repic, Youth Services Director, or call (785) 233-1750. YWCA Northeast Kansas, 225 SW 12th Street, Topeka.

Kids Quest School Year Before and After School Program

We look forward to having your child join us! The Kids Quest before and after school program is available at several TPS 501 elementary schools. Students are provided an afternoon snack, homework assistance, and educational and creative activities. If you have any questions, please email or call Maggie Babinka-Repic, Youth Services Director, 785-233-1750 x347.

Kids Quest Hours

Before school: Mon-Thur: 7:00 am – 8:10 am & Fri: 7:00 am – 9:10 am

After school: Mon – Fri: 3:30 pm – 5:30 pm, snack provided

Kids Quest Before and After School Program has locations at Jardine Elementary, McCarter Elementary, McEachron Elementary, Meadows Elementary, and Whitson Elementary.

Kids Quest Fees

Billed every two weeks.

Both AM and PM: $75 / week per child

AM only: $40 / week per child

PM only: $40 / week per child

Enrollment fee: $20 per child; $30 per family (2 or more children)

Enrollment Information

The 2022-2023 Kids Quest Before and After School program application must be completed IN PERSON at our office in downtown Topeka, 225 SW 12th St.

July 11: Enrollment opens for families who were enrolled in the ELC or Kids Quest before/after care for the 2021-2022 school year.
*Families must not have any past due fees in order to enroll.

July 12: Enrollment opens for Topeka Public Schools USD 501 staff and faculty

July 13: Enrollment opens for the general public

How can I enroll my child?

Step 1: Visit our office (225 SW 12th Street in Downtown Topeka) to complete the state forms, parent agreement and pay the enrollment fee + first two weeks of tuition.

Step 2: Verify your start dates.

Please note: If enrolling more than one child in Kids Quest, an individual application must be completed for each child.

AttentionYour child’s spot will NOT be held until they are fully enrolled. Enrollment is granted when applications are complete and your child is fully enrolled. In order for your child to be fully enrolled, you must complete an Emergency Medical Release form, Financial and Program Guidelines Agreement, Health Assessment, and pay enrollment fees and the first two weeks of tuition to the YWCA Northeast Kansas. (Must be completed in person at the YWCA 225 SW 12th Street, Topeka, KS 66612)

*For Kindergarten only – Immunization record must also be provided before your child is fully enrolled.

What can my child and I expect during the school year?

Homework Assistance
Each day students in Kids Quest have designated time for academic work. Students receive guidance for homework assignments while those without school work are involved in enrichment activities.
Child & Adult Care Food Program and After School Snacks
Kids Quest also offers a snack each day to students in the after school program. We strive to provide students with a healthy option 2-3 days per week including fresh fruits and vegetables. All snacks adhere to the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) guidelines.
Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM)
Each Kids Quest before and after school program is dedicated to incorporating STEM into their weekly activities. In cooperation with Kansas Enrichment Network, Kids Quest staff is working to increase the number of STEM related activities they do on a weekly basis, enhance the quality of these experiences, and encourage critical thinking in students.
Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE)
Each Kids Quest before and after school program is licensed by the Kansas Department of Health and Environment. All programs have annual licensing compliance reviews to ensure the children are safe and properly cared for in a healthy environment. Information on the Kansas Department of Health and Environment licensing for School Age Programs.

Families Empowered by Additional Teaching of Students (FEATS)

FEATS is an after school tutoring program providing specialized instruction, healthy meals, and community engagement to students in Kindergarten through 5th grade. We currently have two FEATS programs; one at Ross Elementary and one at State Street Elementary. Many of the students engaged in FEATS are considered to be at-risk, food insecure, academically challenged, or just need a safe place to go after school.

Ross Elementary FEATS

FEATS at Ross Elementary is brand new in 2018. The funding to provide this program comes from the United Way of Greater Topeka.

Students have direct instruction tutoring three days each week. This tutoring focuses on literacy and mathematics education. YWCA Northeast Kansas, in cooperation with Ross Elementary and the United Way of Greater Topeka, have set goals for the FEATS program to ensure its success:

  • Reduce the number of chronic absences,
  • Reduce behavioral referrals among participating students,
  • Improve students’ attitudes towards math and reading,
  • Increase math and reading state assessment scores
  • Increase the number of students performing at or above grade level in reading and math.

Additionally, two days each week, students participate in extra-curricular activities, field trips, community service work, and team building activities.

Kindergarten Academic Preparedness Program (KAPP)

Students love Bear, the Therapy Dog!

YWCA “Power Up” Summer Program for Topeka Public School Incoming Kindergarteners (KAPP) begins enrollment March 28th! This program is for children who will start kindergarten in August 2022 who have little to no preschool experience. We will prepare your child for how school works and teach them academic and social skills.


  • Dates: June 13, 2022 – July 22, 2022
  • 8:00 AM – 12:30 PM
  • Located at Williams Elementary (Very limited bussing is available)
  • YWCA KAPP is free.
  • Please have applications submitted by May 19th. For more information, download the app by clicking here, or contact: Rebecca (or
    Becky) Trapp-Márquez at 785-235-7131 (office) or by email.

KAPP is provided by YWCA Northeast Kansas in collaboration with Topeka Public Schools and is funded by the United Way of Greater Topeka.

YWCA Programa de preparación académica de kindergarten (en español)

Este programa es para niños que comenzarán el kindergarten en agosto de 2022 y que tienen poca o ninguna experiencia preescolar. Prepararemos a su hijo para el funcionamiento de la escuela y le enseñaremos habilidades académicas y sociales.

  • 13 de junio de 2022 – 22 de julio de 2022
  • 8:00 – 12:30 en Williams Elementary
  • YWCA KAPP es gratis.
  • Por favor envíe las solicitudes antes del 19 de mayo. Para más información contacte Rebecca (o
    Becky) Trapp-Márquez 785-235-7131 (officina) o email.
KAPP Application