ThriveOn King Campaign

In 2022, Malaika was selected to join the ThriveOn Collaboration to develop an early childhood professional development center and early learning center.

Learn all about this initiative by downloading the Case Statement here.

What is the history behind the project?

•In 2019, IFF completed a study commissioned by the Greater Milwaukee Foundation on Milwaukee’s child care system – A Seat at the Table – and found a need to improve access to affordable and culturally responsive early childhood education and care in the city.

•A follow-up study in 2020 by IFF looked closer at three neighborhoods of interest around the ThriveOn King site (Harambee, Brewer’s Hill, and Halyard Park) and found a need for infant and toddler slots in these neighborhoods. 

•Based on this need, the ThriveOn Collaboration of the Greater Milwaukee Foundation, Medical College of Wisconsin and Royal Capital issued an RFP for Early Childhood Education and Care  Professional Development and essential education and care services

They selected Malaika based on our capability, commitment and capacity to expand our success in this important effort.

What is the ThriveOn Collaboration?

The ThriveOn Collaboration is a community-centered vision for the neighborhoods of Halyard Park, Harambee and Brewers Hill in Milwaukee. The Collaboration was founded by the Greater Milwaukee Foundation (GMF), the Medical College of Wisconsin (MCW) and Royal Capital with a joint vision for a Milwaukee that is equitable, healthy and thriving for all. 

ThriveOn King Building

Construction is underway on the ThriveOn King project, a redevelopment of the former Gimbels-Schuster’s building on King Drive, located at the nexus of three vital north-side neighborhoods – Halyard Park, Harambee, and Brewers Hill. The location was chosen for its potential to bring economic and social benefits to communities disproportionately affected by disparities.

Within the building, the Collaboration is making targeted investments in small businesses, affordable housing and early childhood education – actively engaging with the community to shape the goals and design of the space. 

Now, Malaika will be a part of that story! 

What is Malaika’s role in ThriveOn King?

Malaika will create a model professional development center for early childhood professionals and other caregivers

Our ThriveOn King location will serve infants, toddlers and preschool-age children in an exemplary learning environment. They can enroll in the early elementary program at the 1st & Auer location as they age into kindergarten.  

When will our ThriveOn King location be operational?

We expect to be operational by late January 2024. Following is a timeline of events and expected events for the ThriveOn King project:

  • 04.01.22 Malaika Selected to participate in  ThriveOn
  • 09.01.22 Floor plans approved
  • 11.01.22 Malaika fundraising begins
  • 10.01.23 Malaika hires Director of Professional Development and Outreach
  • 10.01.23 Malaika open enrollment for TOK site
  • 01.01.24 Malaika open for childcare
  • 01.01.24 Malaika launches professional development opportunities

Campaign Goals 

We aim to raise $1.3 million to launch this second location successfully. These funds will be used to:

  • Establish an Early Childhood Professional Development Center to build the skills of other local child care providers – a national model for outreach
  • Establish an Early Childhood Care Center for infants, toddlers and preschoolers
  • Improve the quality and availability of child care in the Halyard Park, Harambee, and Brewers Hill neighborhoods and beyond
  • Provide essential early child care education to communities where access and opportunity have been less available

You can help:

Naming rights

There will be many naming opportunities available at the new Malaika center. Names will follow GMF’s naming rights practices and be developed in consultation with the community surrounding the Malaika facility.

The premier naming opportunities are:

  • Naming the entire facility for $500,000
  • Naming the Professional Development program and Director of Professional Development and Outreach position $350,000
  • Outdoor Play area $300,000
  • Indoor play area $250,000

The first floor will house the childcare facility, with additional naming opportunities ranging from $5,000 to $50,000.

The mezzanine will house the Early Childhood Education and Care Professional Development Center. Naming opportunities here range from $5,000-$100,000.

For more information about our new ThriveOn King location, naming opportunities or other donations, please contact Dennis Mueller at or call Tamara Johnson at 414-562-4997.

For more information:

ThriveOn Collaboration/About

A Seat at the Table: Ensuring Equitable Access to Early Childhood Education in Milwaukee

125 West Auer Avenue Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53212 | 414-562-4997
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