Child's Garden

(Left to right) National Life’s Kelly Fournier and Al Foice present a ceremonial key to Orchard Valley Waldorf teacher Stephanie Hoelscher, center, and vice chair of the board Madelief Becherer, right.

MONTPELIER – National Life has donated a building and two acres of surrounding land to the Orchard Valley Waldorf School in the Capital City where the Child’s Garden preschool program is housed.

The donation was marked at a ceremony Tuesday, attended by officials from National Life and the school.

Orchard Valley Waldorf School is an independent school with three campuses: pre-K through eighth grade on the Grace Farm campus in East Montpelier, pre-K at the Child’s Garden in Montpelier; and care for children six weeks through three years at Little Lambs Early Care Center in Montpelier.

“The entire Orchard Valley community is extremely grateful for this generous donation from National Life,” said Cathie Ely, an Orchard Valley administrator. “This gift ensures that we will continue serving Central Vermont families, providing Waldorf early childhood education as an enriching opportunity for the young children in Montpelier, and our surrounding communities.”

“Affordable, high-quality child care is vitally important both to our employees and to our neighbors,” added Mehran Assadi, Chairman, CEO and president of National Life. “We are pleased that we are able to help ensure a strong future for the Child’s Garden.”

Child’s Garden offers two mixed-age early childhood programs: Apple Blossom for children age two to three; and the Sunflower classroom for children aged three to six.

In addition to the donation of the former farmhouse, National Life transferred ownership of a garage, barn and a fenced-in children’s play area, and maintained a right-of-way to its solar farm on a hill behind the property. The company also made a financial donation to Orchard Valley.

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