Parks and Recreation Visits The Rathgeber Center
The Rathgeber Center for Families is an emergency shelter for local families with children experiencing homelessness. The center is unique in the fact that it accepts any make-up of a family, including single dads and their dependent children. Case-management, rehousing services, and other critical resources are provided on-site for each family.
Recently, The Rathgeber Center had exciting visitors from the City of Austin Parks and Recreation department. Katherine and Hannah, two active Park Rangers, brought different pelts, furs, and model skeletons/skulls to teach the children about Texas wildlife. The residents of The Rathgeber Center were able to feel the texture of different types of furs and observe the bone structure of several different animal skulls. One of the most exciting pieces was the skeleton of a Mexican free-tailed bat, the species that live under Congress Bridge!
The kids were eager to look at, touch, and learn about the different types of wildlife. The Park Rangers explained how each type of unique fur pattern or skull anatomy helps an animal survive in its environment. Several of the children expressed a newfound interest in biology and the work done by Park Rangers after this activity. One even asked how to become a Park Ranger when they grow up!
Adjusting to life in a shelter can be difficult and confusing for children, but activities like this one help provide a sense of normalcy to both children and parents navigating this change. We extend thanks to our friends at the City of Austin Parks and Recreation Department for helping provide education, excitement, and hope for the future to our families in shelter!