PHOENIX (KSAZ) - Four decades ago, the Wee Care Child Development Center opened its doors for families who relied on their affordable care.
"Once they walk in here, they become our children," Betty Calderon said.
For three of those decades, Betty Calderon has been at the helm, taking hundreds of children to and from school, feeding them, entertaining them and providing an environment for kids to learn and grow for half the cost that many other daycare's charge.
It's a service that generations have benefited from.
"I have children that we took care of when they were toddlers and then they bring back their children," she said.
Now, she is struggling to stay afloat, even as bills and expenses have piled high over the years, she's refused to raise rates for parents. She understands the importance of providing affordable care, but the cost of that generosity could mean the loss of this beloved business.
"It hurts," she said.
The mere thought of it brings her to tears.
"The need is great, there are a lot of parents that just can't afford it," she said.
A GoFundMe account has been setup to help raise the money needed to keep Wee Care open. The goal is to raise $50,000, but every penny counts.
All of the money would go towards keeping the doors open and keeping a safe place for children in a community that needs it.
"I just want to keep going," she said. "Even if I'm not here, I want this to continue."