United States




ICRI operates and/or oversees three child care and early childhood development centers in the San Francisco Bay Area. Each center incorporates unique curricula and learning environments, and employs talented and dedicated staff. Our goal is to develop a range of outstanding early childhood centers that are models in their communities, and provide study and learning exchange opportunities for educators from around the world.

Hearts Leap School – ICRI was asked in 2001 to take over the operation of this Berkeley child care center, which has since been recognized both locally and internationally as a model early childhood program. Located in the historic Julia Morgan Center for the Arts, Hearts Leap utilizes a discovery-based emergent curriculum. To learn more about the program, please call Ellie Mashhour at (510) 549-1422.

Hearts Leap North – Due to the high demand for slots in the Hearts Leap program, ICRI opened an additional center in North Berkeley in 2008. Heart’s Leap North also utilizes an emergent curriculum, and has quickly become a highly-regarded and sought-after child care option for Bay Area families. To learn more, please call Gretchen Stites at (510) 665-4200.

El Nuevo Mundo – ICRI administers California State Department of Education subsidies and provides training and oversight for this bilingual Spanish/English preschool program in Richmond, California. To learn more, please call Bruno Mosca at (510) 233-2329.

Project Commotion


ICRI is the fiscal sponsor of Project Commotion. The Project is a community space in San Francisco where children, families and educators are invited to learn and grow together through movement, sensory experiences, and creative play.

Our Methodology

We have developed a unique curriculum that incorporates tumbling, music, dance, creative play, and martial arts as a means of fostering healthy development, self-awareness, and self-expression. We begin with an intake and assessment of each child, and then schedule him or her in weekly private or small group lessons as determined by the child’s needs and individual stage of development. Parents receive regular progress reports and communication from the instructors, and are encouraged to attend our adult education workshops in order to enhance their ability to respond to the unique strengths and needs of their child.

Children with Special Needs

Project Commotion has particular expertise in serving children with special needs. We are committed to serving children of all abilities and have developed specific curricula for children coping with autism spectrum disorders, sensory processing disorders, cerebral palsy, and trauma. Project Commotion provides special education support and advocacy, and assists families navigating the IEP (Individualized Education Plan) process.

Other Activities

We offer a wide range of classes for children of all ages and abilities, including Capoeira, Karate, tumbling, movement and dance, and creative play. Private, semi-private, and small group classes are available for children, and community workshops are offered for adults and caregivers. Project Commotion is also a popular site for school field trips.

To learn more, please visit www.projectcommotion.org.

Family Daycare Support Network

Family Daycare Support Network works to ensure that children from low income families in Alameda County, California have access to nutritious food that promotes their health and development.

ICRI receives funding from the State of California Department of Education and the United States Department of Agriculture to provide subsidies to child care providers serving children from low income and working poor families. These funds are used to reimburse child care providers for purchasing and preparing meals that meet recommended nutrition standards for young children.

In addition to providing this direct funding for healthy meals, ICRI staff routinely visit participating child care providers to offer them one-on-one training and support. ICRI also works to educate family daycare providers on the importance of good nutrition, and publishes a newsletter with healthy eating tips and suggested recipes.


  • Currently, approximately 125 family child care providers receive nutrition subsidies, training and support from ICRI.
  • Over 950 low-income children in Alameda County receive daily nutritious meals at their child care centers through ICRI.
  • Since FDSN began in 1995, ICRI has distributed over eleven million dollars in nutrition subsidies for low-income children in Alameda County.
  • 1,854 snacks and meals served per day and 480,237 snacks and meals served per year.

For access to forms relating to Family Daycare Support Network, click here.

Onechild Africa

ICRI is the fiscal sponsor of OneChild Africa. OneChild Africa is dedicated to the well-being of children made vulnerable by the HIV/AIDS pandemic in Sub-Saharan Africa.

The group was formed by Stanford faculty, students, and alumni as a part of the International Initiative at Stanford University. Dr. Brent Solvason, the group’s leader and founder, invited ICRI to provide technical expertise and organizational support. ICRI’s Board of Directors then agreed to take on full fiscal sponsorship of OneChild Africa, to support this important initiative which works to:

Raise awareness locally and nationally of the crisis for vulnerable children evolving in Sub-Saharan Africa as a result of the HIV/AIDS pandemic and worldwide recession.

Develop educational programs for middle school, high school, undergraduate, and medical students in the US and southern Africa to help them understand the devastating effects of the AIDS pandemic on children’s wellbeing in Africa.

Develop better care practices for vulnerable children, through the use of reliable assessments of children’s well-being in the present; the use of biological measures to assess the brain development of children who have endured grief, trauma, and neglect; and the utilization of this data to better predict and respond to longer term outcomes as these children grow to adulthood.

To learn more, please visit www.onechildafrica.org.

Aids Orphan Care

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ICRI is the fiscal sponsor of AIDS Orphan Care, which works to improve the lives of African children orphaned by HIV/AIDS. AIDS Orphan Care focuses on the nation of Lesotho, a small country in Southern Africa with the 3rd highest HIV infection rate in the world. In Lesotho, 1 in 4 adults is HIV-positive, and over 110,000 AIDS orphans need care and support.

AIDS Orphan Care partners with local, grassroots projects to meet the basic needs of orphaned children- food, shelter, clothing, health care, and education.

Peanut Butter Project

The Peanut Butter Project distributes a large 1-kg tub of peanut butter to every HIV-positive child age 1-17 every time they attend a medical visit at Tsepong HIV Clinic. Nearly half of all HIV-positive children in Lesotho suffer stunted growth from chronic malnutrition. Peanut butter is a simple solution–a high protein, locally available food which requires no cooking or preparation.

Mamelo Primary School

The Mamelo Primary School offers free primary education to nearly 300 orphans and HIV-positive children. The School’s Emergency Fund for Orphans allows the teachers to meet the most pressing needs of the students–buying shoes and clothing, medicine, and school supplies. In addition, the Fund allows the school to provide free, nutritious breakfasts to the students.

Rebecca’s House

Rebecca’s House is a small orphanage which can care for up to 10 orphans, including those with special medical needs such as HIV, tuberculosis, and malnutrition. Rebecca’s House also provides community outreach, support and respite to child-headed households and orphans being raised by grandparents in the surrounding villages. We provide mattresses, blankets, food, transportation to medical appointments, school uniforms and other essentials. We also hope to support Rebecca’s House to start a small bread baking project to supply the orphans with bread and to earn sustainable income for the program through community sales.

To learn more about AIDS Orphan Care, please visit www.aidsorphancare.org.