Today we’d like to introduce you to Tamara Williams-Dobson.
So, before we jump into specific questions, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I feel extremely honored and blessed given this opportunity and counted amongst such a group of beautiful and prosperous individuals, and I pray that my story encourages and/or inspires you in some way shape or form. One of my favorite scriptures and the one that has been laid on my heart to bring to your remembrance is Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the plans I have for you”, declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future”. Lord…. I have received and will continue to receive your word.
A wise man once said, they see your glory but they don’t know your story, so let me give you guys a little background. It was the fall of 1999 and my husband and I had just returned from the Peace Apostolic Annual Marrieds’ Retreat to Kona Hawaii a couple of months prior, and I was starting to feel a little strange in my body. Having worked in the medical field, one of the very first things they do to women who are not feeling well is to perform a pregnancy test. Not believing that this could be the reason why I wasn’t feeling well, reluctantly I took a pregnancy test. Surprise!! I was pregnant with my now 20-year-old son Kevin, whom we affectionately call Baby Kona.
Ok… let me paint a quick picture for you, I was 36 years old with a 13 years old, a nine years old, and now an infant on the way?! I was working for a private post-secondary college as a “Regional Director of Placement and Student Services” and was responsible for three campuses, traveling to LA, Riverside, and Orange Counties in the course of a week. Although I had a big title and traveled three days a week and worked from home for two, I wasn’t receiving my worth. I had numerous certifications but, I did not have a degree. Now to add insult to injury, I was diagnosed with my 3rd high-risk pregnancy. I was taken off of work and placed on bed rest for four months of my pregnancy, and two additional months after the delivery. Not sure of how we were going to survive because we were a two-parent income family, I had enough faith to know that JESUS would work things out. Barbara Corcoran, a Real Estate and Shark Tank Investor once said… “The difference between successful people and others is, how long they spend time feeling sorry for themselves”.
But GOD, who is rich in mercy, placed Sister Vernise Dorsey in my path. She told me about the family childcare business and suggested that I look into possibly starting one of my own. Just to give you an overview: According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are 232,923 regulated Family Child Care Homes in the U.S. Research provides evidence that children in early childhood learn and thrive in warm, loving and home-like settings and natural environments. Family childcare has and will continue to play a major role in determining this country’s future. In Family Childcare:
Providers operate independently as a sole proprietor, or under the sponsorship of an outside organization.
Revenue from family childcare typically contributes about a ¼ to a ½ of total household income.
Providers spend an average of 52 hours a week directly caring for children, plus an additional 10 hours a week, on average, on tasks related to their business.
The most stressful aspects of licensed providers’ work are the fact that their earnings are unpredictable and that they often have to juggle conflicting tasks or duties.
At first, I was reluctant about owning my own childcare facility because my children had never been in family childcare and I had no idea about what family child consisted of. Secondly, Vernise told me that I had the opportunity to make six figures but I didn’t believe her. Nonetheless, I decided to PRAY and give it a try. My request to GOD was to show me “How to do this, and I began to listen to HIS voice. I attended an orientation while on maternity leave and began to research to educate myself regarding the family childcare field. Through research, I learned how to create a flyer, contract, parent handbook, tuition schedule, newsletter, and other valuable tools needed to “build my brand” and present my business in a professional manner. In building my brand, it was important for me to be professional and to remember that first impressions are a lasting impression.
Although my business is home-based, my clients have never seen me in a state that I looked like I just rolled out of bed, with a head scarf, pajamas, house shoes, and etc.…and my home and childcare facility was always clean and presentable. When someone was interested in my services, I would schedule the initial meeting after hours so that I could sit down with them, go over my services, the philosophy which is to “provide children with the foundation to become successful lifetime learners”, the highlights of my program, and answer any questions that they may have. But as we all know, right before the LORD blesses you, you will always encounter a test, and I was no exception. There were naysayers and/or individuals whom were discouraging and who were what I like to call “dream killers”, but Jeannie Mai, host of the TV show The Real, addressed this matter so beautifully. She stated that “There’s always someone who is not going to believe in your worth…. Just don’t let it be YOU”.
Now let’s get back to listening to GOD…. As previously stated, I had been off work for six months and now needed to furnish my business in order to market it. I remember sitting on the stairs in my home asking GOD, “How am I going to do this”? I composed a donation request letter to my neighbors and encouraged my children to strap on their roller skates going house to house placing the letters on their doors. Reluctantly, I composed a donation request letter to my church and Pastor. I was reluctant because I was shy and new to this whole church life and had never had a Pastor as honorable and present to his congregation as ours. But I could hear the voice of GOD saying, “You have not because you ask not” and so I did. I was ever so grateful how the Late Sister Cynthia Swancy believed in my vision and my desire to serve my community and poured into my business. She supplied me with above and beyond what I initially asked for. Because I had no room to house the excess items, I actually had to refuse some of them. Having someone outside of my mother, to believe in me and to pour into my life with so much love and sincerity was unbelievable beyond words. I sincerely wish that she could be here today to see the results from the seed that she planted. For this, I am forever grateful, for GOD has truly shown me favor through this entire process.
Next I asked, “LORD how will I feed these children”? I was lead to grab the phone book and begin to make calls to the local food banks and other agencies. The Salvation Army heard my cry and not only supplied me with enough commodities to supply feed my daycare, but enough to food, thanksgiving baskets, and Christmas toys to several families and other daycare facilities throughout Riverside, Orange, and LA Counties as well. The Founder of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Melinda Gates, says: If you are successful, it is because somewhere, sometime, someone gave you a life or an idea that started you in the right direction. Remember also that you are indebted to life until you help some less fortunate person, just as you were helped.”
• Successful Business Owner for approximately 20 years
• Tier 5 Quality Rating Improvement System (QRIS) Demonstration Site
• Partially Funded by First 5 Riverside to provide scholarships to families in need
• Masters of Arts Degree in Human Development with Emphasis in Leadership in Education
• Bachelors of Arts Degree in Early Childhood Education with
emphasis in Special Needs
• Founder of Riverside County Training Institute, Inc.
Author of “I Am in the Middle and I Am Special Too! Children’s Publication
Author of “A Guide to Tier 5” Quality Assessment Tool
• Past President of the Riverside County Family Childcare Assoc.
• Director Mentor for California Early Childhood Education Mentor Program
• Certified CLASS OBSERVER
• Certified BAS OBSERVER
• Certified Trainer for the Program for Infant and Toddlers (PITC)
• Certified Observer for National Association for Family Childcare (NAFCC)
• Nationally Accredited through NAFCC since 2003
• Recognized by RCCCC “Top Childcare Provider”2006
• Coordinating Council for CA Child Development Corp
• Designated Subject Teaching Credential
• Childhood Development Permit
• Facilitated Numerous Workshops for Local, State, and National Conferences
• Numerous Certificates and Professional Growth Hours
• 1 of 4 providers amongst thousands throughout Riverside County, to receive an Access and Quality Grant funded by First 5 Riverside to provide children with access to quality childcare and financial assistance.
• Has received $360,000.00 from First 5 in 2013- 2016 Funding Year.
• Tamara Dobson has received over $14, 891.00 from First 5 in 2008- 2009 Funding Year.
• Leadership Alliance Summit in the amount of $11,997.00 for a Mentor Training.
• Numerous Stipend Awards ranging in the amount of $1500.00 to $4,000.00
In closing, I would like to express my sentiments through several quotes from Boss Lady herself Mrs. Michelle Obama. “I am an example of what is possible when girls from the very beginning of their lives are loved and nurtured by people around them. I was surrounded by extraordinary women in my life who taught me about quiet strength and dignity. One of the lessons that I grew up with was to always stay true to yourself and never let what somebody else says distract you from your goals. Just do what works for you because there will always be someone who thinks differently. Take what you have and create what you want. Success isn’t about how much money you make, it’s about the difference you make in people’s lives.”
Recognized for Achieving a “Tier 5” on the Quality Rating Scale
Provider of the Month by the Consortium of Early Learning
Facilitated a Mental Health Colloquium for RCTI.
***Recently became Franchisee Partner of FatBurger Glendora with our brother and sister in Christ Deana and Clint Lewis***
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
It definitely has not been a smooth road. My biggest struggles have been finding proper help and financial roadblocks.
Dobson Christian Preschool and Childcare and Riverside County Training Institute – what should we know? What do you do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
Dobson Christian Preschool and Childcare, a Tier 5 on the Quality Rating Improvement System (QRIS) Demonstration Site
To provide a healthy, loving, nurturing, supportive, and educationally enriched environment for the children we serve so that they may enter into school ready to embrace lifelong learning.
To secure partnerships that will enable our organization to provide a state of the art facility equipped to promote school readiness and nourish the development of the children we serve without prejudice, as well as provide security to the parents while they are working.
At Dobson Christian Preschool, the classroom spaces are well defined for children to guide their exploration and invite social and cognitive experiences. Particular aspects of the classroom environment may include but not limited to: a meeting space for large group gatherings and read a loud, an investigative science center, a cozy literacy library for reading, a stimulating writing/message area, a construction area for blocks and other building materials, a mini arts and crafts workspace, and a state of the art dramatic play area. The classrooms are uniquely organized with materials that are prudently chosen, presented, and stored at the child’s level to encourage maximum independence. The Reggio Emilia inspired classroom environment and Inquiry-Based Curriculum approach, plays a crucial role in the teaching and learning process, provoking students’ creativity and curiosity, stimulating the imagination, and encouraging students to become critical thinkers and problem solvers. The classrooms are purposefully designed and prepared by the educators in collaboration with other professionals in an effort to optimize small and large group interaction, social-emotional development and play, and constructive and inquiry-based learning.
Riverside County Training Institute, Inc. serving Early Childhood Educators Statewide.
Guided by relentless focus at RCTI, we are dedicated to establishing partnerships with professionals in an effort to provide accessibility to high quality, comprehensive training throughout the state of California.
Fatburger is an American fast casual restaurant chain. Its tagline is The Last Great Hamburger Stand.
In short, I am most proud of the publications that were birthed from these businesses, achieving a Tier 5 status on the Quality Rating Improvement System, and acquiring ownership in my very first franchise.
What moment in your career do you look back most fondly on?
I am most proud of the publications that were birthed from these businesses and achieving a Tier 5 status on the Quality Rating Improvement System and facilitating a very successful Mental Health Colloquium that included the Mayor of Eastvale.
A Guide To Tier 5: Using the Quality Rating Improvement System (QRIS) and R.I.S.E. Approach to Increase Quality in Early Childhood Programs
I Am In The Middle and I Am Special Too!
Becoming a Franchisee PARTNER for FatBurger Glendora.
- Address: 12392 Feather Drive, Eastvale, CA 91752
- Website: www.TamaraWilliams-Dobson.com
- Phone: 951 340-3186 Childcare 909 394-0345 FatBurger Glendora 951
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, TamaraDobsonRCTI@Outlook.com, T.Fatburger@gmail.com
- Instagram: tamarawilliamsdobson
- Facebook: Tamara Williams Dobson
Photo Credit Marcus Johnson