Community Notes


December 17, 2003

Free assistance available for families seeking child care

Free assistance is available to parents in Howard County who are seeking a child care center, family child-care provider, programs for school-aged children or preschools.

Trained child care counselors will assist parents to identify child care services that are best suited to the parents' needs, preferences and ability to pay. The service, called LOCATE: Child Care, is offered by the Howard County Child Care Resource Center.

Parents will also get help finding programs for which they qualify, such as subsidized health care, subsidized child care and tax credits.

Information: 410-313-1930, from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

For general child care information: 410-313-1940, or www. center.

County reminds residents to clear storm drains

The Howard County Department of Public Works reminds residents that storm drains obstructed by debris, ice or snow increase the possibility of flooding.

Leaves, grass or other waste dumped in roadways wash into storm drains and render them ineffective. Debris also washes into local streams and rivers that drain directly into the Chesapeake Bay, causing pollution.

Leaving or dumping trash or other refuse on highways is forbidden by the Annotated Code of Maryland.

Information: 410-313-7450, or

Registration is open for master gardener class

Registration is open for master gardener training offered by the Maryland Cooperative Extension, Howard County Office. The training will cover plant, insect and disease problems, and other topics related to sustainable and environmental impacts of gardening practices.

Training will be offered from 9 a.m. to noon Mondays and Wednesdays, Jan. 26 to March 31, at the Maryland Cooperative Extension Office in Ellicott City. The cost is $130. New and experienced gardeners are invited to register.

Information or to receive a registration packet: 410-313- 2707.

Seasonal opportunities listed for volunteers

The Volunteer Center Serving Howard County's Holiday Gift Guide 2003 lists seasonal volunteer and other needs of about 40 nonprofit and governmental organizations.

Warm clothing, furniture, unwrapped toys, non- perishable food, small appliances and other items are needed.

Volunteers are needed to help with holiday parties, wrapping gifts and other seasonal programs.

Information or to request a copy of the Holiday Gift Guide 2003: 410-715-3172.

Relay for Life fund-raiser planned for June 4 and 5

Relay for Life, an overnight community fund-raiser for the American Cancer Society, is to be held June 4 and 5. Teams of eight to 15 people are needed.

Teams can be employees, friends, members of religious groups and civic organizations or neighbors. A captain organizes and leads the team.

Money is raised from sponsors before the event, which includes taking turns walking or running around a track through the night, camping and having picnics, music, dancing and games.

The event will include a ceremony during which candles are lighted to honor or remember those affected by cancer. Candles are $10 each.

Requests to purchase a candle can be sent to

Information about forming a team or becoming a team member: 800-787-4337.

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