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Provider of the Month: Kelly Willis

Childcare providers have one of the most important jobs in the world and deserve to be celebrated! That’s why we’ll be highlighting a provider every month based on nominations we’ve received. Is there someone special you’d like to nominate? Let us know! 


As the owner of Open Arms Child Care in South Hutchinson, Kelly Willis has devoted herself to nurturing the youngest members of her community, and her efforts have not gone unnoticed. Recently, Kelly was awarded as the Reno County Child Care Task Force Provider of the Month for June, a well-deserved recognition of her commitment to the well-being of children under her care.

"I was very shocked," Kelly said, when learning of the award. "It means a lot to me that I was chosen. I think it's great recognition. That's something we don't get very often, so it makes us feel good when someone thinks of us enough to nominate us.”

Kelly's journey in childcare began during her senior year of high school, and it quickly became her life's passion. Over the years, she gained experience working in various preschools, head starts, and childcare centers. In 2019, she took a leap of faith and decided to open her own childcare center, Open Arms Child Care, a place where children are not just looked after, but truly nurtured and cared for. Like many childcare providers, Kelly faced numerous challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic, but with the support of the Reno County Child Care Task Force and her unwavering dedication, she persevered.

"The Reno County Childcare Task Force is very important to all daycare providers and facilities. It allows us to have a source out there that can bring things to us that we need as childcare providers that we don't always have at hand. They're the ones that's honestly kept me going since COVID happened.”

Her favorite part of working with children is the opportunity to teach, love, and spend time with them, providing a safe and nurturing environment while their parents are at work. Over the years, Kelly has formed deep bonds with the children and families she has served.

 "I get relationships with my families that last me a lifetime, and that's one of the best things that I get from being a provider."

In honoring Kelly Willis as the Provider of the Month, the Reno County Child Care Task Force not only recognizes her individual achievements but also celebrates the essential role that childcare providers play in the well-being of our communities. Kelly's dedication, compassion, and unwavering commitment to the children under her care serves as an inspiration for all.

Congratulations to Kelly on being nominated as our Provider of the Month! If you know an exceptional childcare provider you’d like to nominate, please do so here: Submit Your Nomination.


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