Over the Years
February 7 – The “circle members” met and voted the temporary shelter to be known as the Guild of St. Agnes. Officers were elected. Interest grew for the mission and in one month there were over 400 members donating financial gifts to the endeavor. The total money raised was over $1,599. The site was selected, and the first address of the Guild became 20 Vernon St. the former Hopkins Estate.
December 18 – The Commonwealth of Massachusetts awards the Guild of St. Agnes its state charter to operate as a charitable organization. The Guild opens its doors for the first time in June at 20 Vernon Street in Worcester.
May – The Ladies Catholic Benevolent Association invites the Sisters of Providence to manage the Guild and the services expand to include a “Day Nursery.” In the first two months 751 children are enrolled. The charge is 5 cents a day for those able to pay.
World War 1 breaks out and the Guild establishes an auxiliary Red Cross to help in those efforts. When the following year an influenza epidemic severely strikes the area, the Guild takes care of many of the children whose parents are victims. During the next 650 days, the Guild cares for fifty-one affected children.
The first vehicle is purchased to transport children from other areas of the city.
World War II breaks out, Women are asked to assist in the war efforts. Their children were placed at the Guild.
The Guild of St. Agnes and Catholic Charities decide to separate services. The Guild continues with child care and Catholic Charities takes over the social service component.
The Sisters of Providence end their services at the Guild and lay teachers are hired.
Francis Naughton is named the first Executive Director of the Guild.
Mr. Naughton forms a family child care program at the Guild and hires family child care coordinators to oversee the program.
The Guild secures a new location at 133 Granite Street once known as St. Ann’s Orphanage.
Madeleine Hailing becomes the second lay person to become Executive Director and expands the Guild presence in the community and state organizations.
Edward P. Madaus is hired as the new Executive Director
July 1: The Visiting Nurses Association closes their child care center and the Guild is chosen to take over the location in Gardner.
August 24: Immaculate Conception Church in Worcester contacts the Guild asking about transforming their social center into a child care facility.
December 31: The Guild receives information from the MA Attorney General’s Office that V.O.I.C.E. a child care agency in Bellingham is closing and the Guild is asked by the Attorney General to assume ownership.
September: The Guild joins partners with the Worcester Public School to offer after school programs at 4 of the elementary schools. Over the years 3 additional schools are added.
July 3: All Aboard Child Care in Ayer approaches the Guild asking if the Guild will take over ownership giving us more of a presence in Ayer.
September 5: The Guild opens a new center on Lincoln St. in Worcester to collaborate with M.S.P.C.C. assisting parents in achieving better parenting skills.
September 3: The Guild signs a contract with Devens Enterprise Commission breaking ground for a larger, new center that will provide more care to the children of North Worcester County. The Ayer center is closed.
June: The Guild has its first five graduates with an associate degree in Early Childhood Education using the Guild’s free tuition benefit.
September: The Overlook Masonic Home in Charlton contacts the Guild of St. Agnes. In partnership with them the Guild operates a child care center for their employees and the community.
November 1: The Guild purchases a property at 155 Green St. in Gardner and redesigns the building to become a child care center.
December 1: The Guild designs and builds a long awaited, state of the art, center at 129 Granite St. enrolling 175 children and allowing for central food services and transportation operations.
July 12: The Guild answers a request for proposal to manage the Webster child care center. The Guild was chosen by the owners of the center, MAPFRE, the former Commerce Insurance child care center to run the center. Enrollment is open to families throughout Southern Worcester County.
The Guild celebrates 100 years of child care.
The Guild provides locations on Hamilton St. and Burncoat Street in Worcester for our bulging after school programs.
July: The Guild purchases the Webster location with the help of a $750,000 grant from the State of Massachusetts.
November 1: The Guild acquires the former Elm Park Child Care center and takes over managing the struggling center and quickly fills all openings.
September 26: The Guild enters into an agreement with the Mercy Centre of Catholic Charities and opens a much needed after school program on the west side of the City of Worcester.
November 1: The Guild enters an agreement with the pastor at Salem Covenant Church in Worcester to open a toddler/preschool program for 44 children to replace the closing of the Elm Park Center.
August: The Guild of St. Agnes purchases the Fitchburg location for school age programs
March 13: The Covid 19 pandemic strikes, and the Guild closes all programs with the exception of one location in Worcester for essential workers during the pandemic.
May 1: The Guild purchases an administrative office at 19 Harvard St. in Worcester and moves from our rented 405 Grove St. location.
June 29: The Guild cautiously reopens all locations.
November 1: The Guild continues to grow and moves the Family Child Care office and business support staff to 12 Harvard St. in Worcester.
The Guild purchases the former Colonial Bowling Alley on Mill Street in Worcester and plans are in place to convert it into a child care center. Worcester State University agrees to partner with the Guild offering a teaching lab for their students.
February: The renovated the historic Booth House, the former Elm Park child care center, is transformed into a 3-family condominium placing this location back on the City of Worcester tax roll.
Plans are in place to open a new bilingual school age program, La Familia in partnership with the Worcester Public Schools.