The Learning Treehouse


RINCON, GA 31326
(912) 826-2893

Ashley Boland was a Certified Special Needs Kindergarten Teacher in the public school system and Sheila Huggins was her Paraprofessional assistant. In these careers, Ashley and Sheila were responsible for not only the day to day care of special needs children, but also their education and socialization. Ashley and Sheila experienced the burnout that many public school professionals do and decided that their mission in life was to operate a daycare center for children from 6 weeks old to 12 years old.

Such was the auspicious beginnings of The Learning Treehouse. Once the decision was made to leave the public school system, Ashley and Sheila began planning their daycare and the things that would make it both different and special. Ashley and Sheila worked with the local SBDC office to prepare their business plan and projections. Their goal was to provide a quality, loving reliable facility for the people of Effingham County. As a bedroom community to Savannah, Effingham County is growing at a rapid rate and was grossly underserved in daycare facilities.

Their SBDC representative referred Ashley and Sheila to SBAC. Upon completion of the business plan and projections, Ashley and Sheila worked on completing an SBA application for both an SBA 504 Loan to construct the building and a companion 7(a) loan to furnish it and provide the initial working capital. BB&T’s branch in Rincon approved the requests and they were sent to the SBA for review.

SBA approval was received and construction began on the facility. Ashley and Sheila were able to bring their project “in on time” and “on budget.” Utilizing the all of their creativity as educators, Ashley and Sheila have created a brand new daycare facility that focuses on providing quality, consistent care for their neighbors, friends, and families. The facility opened in September 2001 and already has an extensive waiting list for infants and toddlers. The word is out!

Stop by The Learning Treehouse and take a look at the wonderful environment that these two ladies have created for OUR children – OUR future!