Magic Memories Child Development Center had been in business for 19 years when Neydary Zambrano acquired it in 2006. In the nine years since then, Magic Memories has seen truly impressive growth and improvement. As a Keystone STARS program, Magic Memories receives a rating based on the STARS criteria: Standards, Training/Professional Development, Assistance, Resources, and Support. An initiative of the Office of Child Development and Early Learning in Pennsylvania, the Keystone STARS performance standards provide the foundation for participating programs. With possible ratings of STAR 1, STAR 2, STAR 3, and STAR 4, Magic Memories has jumped from being a STAR 1 program to a STAR 4 program since Zambrano purchased it. She has grown the business by over 30 percent, increased staffing from 16 to 46 employees, and added a Kindergarten Enrichment Program. Magic Memories has a current enrollment of 96 children from six weeks old through fifth grade, with before- as well as after-school care for school age children, and 240 children as part of their collaboration with the Phoenixville School District to provide Kindergarten Enrichment for their full time students. In addition, the Center offers a summer camp for children ages 3 through 10.
It’s clear that what sets Magic Memories apart and makes it such an outstanding facility is its focus on quality assurance, which is Zambrano’s top priority. She considers excellence in staffing to be the key to the quality improvement she has achieved at Magic Memories. Under her ownership, each staff member has a degree in early childhood development, with a ratio of one lead preschool teacher per 10 children. Magic Memories’ mission is to provide children with a loving, caring and stimulating environment. It strives to provide not only a safe and healthy environment, but one which nurtures each child’s self-esteem and social development, and it teaches a value system of respect, courtesy and love. Child-centered learning is focused on each child’s needs, abilities, interests and learning styles, which encourages each child to have a role in determining the learning process. Magic Memories’ ultimate goal is to provide a strong foundation for children to achieve their highest level of cognitive, physical, social and emotional development.
Zambrano came to Magic Memories with a wealth of experience. She holds a Law degree from Venezuela, a Masters of Law Degree from Temple University, and a Certificate in Executive Leadership from Bryn Mawr College. Prior to her acquisition of Magic Memories, where she now serves as president, she managed the Chester County Healthy Start Program, which specializes in children's health and development. Her background, together with her obvious love of children and passion for the field of early child development, has clearly helped her to make Magic Memories the success that it is today. Despite Magic Memories’ remarkable growth and success, Zambrano is constantly looking to the future and exploring ways to expand and improve even further.
Zambrano first met with SCORE when she was considering acquiring Magic Memories. She credits Score counselors Robert Wingerter and Randy Hove with providing both guidance and perspective throughout the process. Since she was raised in a different country, SCORE’s guidance was particularly valuable in helping her to understand the culture of business in the United States. In 2011, Zambrano met with SCORE counselors again to evaluate options for expanding Magic Memories’ facilities, using the SCORE financial model to assist in her decision. At that time, Magic Memories underwent a renovation and expansion of its physical space. Now, three and a half years later, with her business near maximum capacity, Zambrano has again contacted SCORE to discuss plans for further expansion, which may include acquiring another facility. She says of her experience with SCORE, “It’s amazing that you can get the benefit of so much knowledge and experience free of charge!”
SCORE is a non-profit national organization of business volunteers dedicated to providing free counseling and educational service to small businesses. SCORE volunteers are seasoned business experts who apply their life experience and business knowledge to mentor individuals planning to start a small business, or small business owners who seek assistance in solving business issues. To schedule a personal session with a counselor or learn about small business education programs, call Chester and Delaware County SCORE at 610-344-6910 or click here to visit us online Chester County SCORE.
February 13, 2015