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About Us & Our Team

The Walnut Woods Difference

We’re not your average childcare center. Backed by over 170 years in children’s ministries, staffed with an exemplary team of educators, and situated on an idyllic campus with room to explore, we provide an excellent value far beyond the cost.


Our Story


Once upon a time, long-time church parishioner, Jack Baker, wanted to help ensure a bright future for East Union Presbyterian Church. He lovingly collected walnut seeds from Deer Lakes Park and planted them on the church property with the hope that they would grow and provide an income for the church, should it ever be in need. Thankfully, these trees have thrived, as has the church. We now enjoy the beauty of over 100 strong walnut trees and the thoughtful intention behind them.


We approach childcare the same way, with the loving intent to help nurture and grow your children through well-researched, age-based stimulation and learning opportunities. We walk with you and your family every step of your journey as we prepare your child for school and beyond – all through a nurturing environment founded on the fruit of the spirit.

Our Organizational Philosophy

Since children learn to trust and gain confidence when their physical and emotional needs are met in a consistent, loving atmosphere, our goal is to help develop the whole child: spiritually, socially, emotionally, physically, and intellectually.

Our Team

A five-member Voluntary Advisory Board (VAB) oversees our educators. This board is composed of a Pastor, the Walnut Woods Summer Camp Director, the Walnut Woods Executive Director, a Session member, and two congregation members. Our Team is experienced in early childhood care with up-to-date clearances and a passion for working with children.

Dante Foster

Walnut Woods Summer Camp Director

Dante brings a youthful innovative approach and boasts a positive energy into everything he does. Previously serving as Assistant Director at Camp AIM, he majored in early childhood education and received his bachelors degree from Point Park University. He also has a certification in Special Education for grades K-8. Prior to coming to Walnut Woods, Dante was a Student Teacher at North Allegheny School District. He also has many years of experience working with children from his time as a tutor and volunteer for many youth activities. He is excited for the children to experience all of the activities he has planned for the summer. He looks forward to learning each campers interests since he is a believer in child-led learning to encourage and foster imagination and learning.  Dante is originally from Hershey PA but now lives with his girlfriend and their dog in the North Hills. He loves the outdoors and sports and can't wait to bring his love for those interests to the campers of Walnut Woods!

Mindy Young

Walnut Woods Executive Director

Mindy is our Administrative Assistant and Financial Secretary at the Church. She also serves as our Executive Director. Her primary role is to oversee Walnut Woods and communications between the Summer Camp Director and our Voluntary Advisory Board.  She works closely alongside Dante to support any needs the Camp, its Counselor's and Campers may have. She has over 10 years of Nanny experience and 4 years of accounting experience. She lives with her husband and two children in West Deer. Mindy is also an active member of the church as well as the community, serving as a girls youth basketball coach for Deer Lakes. She loves the outdoors and summer. She can't wait to see the campus filled with the joy and energy only children can bring.

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