The Nest Center for Women, Children & Families, a Lexington non-profit social service agency, is closing its most highly visible program — a respite day care.
Cliff Feltham, a spokesman for the Nest, said that a projected operating deficit at the center of approximately $132,000 necessitates that the day care stop offering services after July 21.
The day care program accounted for approximately 60 percent of the deficit, Feltham said.
Board chair William Owsley said Nest officials did not want to close the day care, which served 696 children from unstable families in the fiscal year 2007-08.
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"For the good of the center and in order to continue all the important work that it does, this was the only choice that we really had," Owsley said.
The children in the day care will now be served by two other organizations, the Family Care Center and the Manchester Center, Feltham said.
Crisis case management, survivors counseling and self-help parenting programs will continue at the center on North Limestone. Those programs served 1,900 clients in 2007-08.
Patty M. Breeze, incoming board chair, said the programs that remain are strong. The services are free to families.
Feltham confirmed Friday night that Eileen O'Malley, executive director of the center resigned this week. Reached by telephone at her home Saturday, O'Malley declined to comment.
Meanwhile, Center officials say they hope a corporate sponsor or benefactor will fund the day care on a long-term basis.
The board will host its annual fund-raiser "A Night for the Nest" on Sept. 18 at Greenbriar Country Club in Lexington.