Locating Child Care
As you look for child care, consider these resources:
- Your local Child Care Resource and Referral (CCR&R) Agency provides a wealth of information for parents on local child care options as well as financial issues surrounding child care. The agency's services are usually free.
CCR&R agencies were created to connect parents to child care options, help increase the supply of quality care, and support communities in meeting child care needs. By helping to bridge the communication and research gaps surrounding this service industry, CCR&R's facilitate communal cooperation to ensure quality care for children throughout the United States. For more information, visit the National Association of Child Care Resource and Referral Agencies.
- Talk to your child's pediatrician. Many pediatricians have information about child care options in their area or know of local resources for families looking for child care. If your child is of school age, talk to a teacher or guidance counselor about afterschool or before-school care programs available to you. Your child's school, or a school nearby, may run a school-age child care service.
- Call your local branch of the United Way. United Way is a national organization with more than 1,400 local branches nationwide aiming to help provide informational and financial resources for each community they serve. Each branch in locally operated by volunteers and is thus completely individualized to the needs of the area. This organization will provide you with information about services and opportunities available in your community. To find a United Way near you, or to learn more, visit their website.
- Check with your local library. Many provide their communities with much more than books--they're also great resources for information on local services, including child care.
- Find a local Head Start program for your child by clicking here. Head Start is a government-sponsored organization with the goal of providing quality care for children of low-income families. This federal program helps to prepare children for success in kindergarten and beyond through its nourishing, learning-focused curriculum. Local child care providers participate in the program by receiving funding from the Head Start Bureau, using the Head Start curriculum, and implementing its goals. Find more information about this program at www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/hsb.
- Yellowpages.com and Switchboard.com have convenient ZIP Code locators. Typing "child care" into the category field will give you the addresses and telephone numbers of child care providers in your area.
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