Family Child C.A.R.E. NYC is a collaboration of four organizations: the Low Income Investment Fund (LIIF), All Our Kin, ParentChild+, and Ramapo for Children.
Why Family Child Care?
Family child care programs:
- provide nurturing care for children, often in communities of color
- are disproportionately owned and operated by women of color
- provide care to 30% of infants and toddlers, compared to just 12% in centers
- are often the most familiar, flexible, convenient, personal, and affordable option for families
- owners are at risk of losing their home if their business fails.
How did we get started?
Many home-based child care programs, already operating on shoestring budgets, lost nearly 70% of their income during the first week of the COVID pandemic shelter-in-place orders. LIIF created an emergency COVID grant program to help family child care providers (FCCs) in the city.
One of the grant program’s funders was Early Childhood Partners (ECP) at the New York Community Trust. They were impressed by LIIF’s team and their commitment to serving family child care providers. As the COVID grant program was coming to an end in early 2021, ECP approached LIIF with another idea—a technical assistance hub that would provide comprehensive assistance and resources to improve childcare facilities.
With funding from ECP, LIIF began the planning phase, believing that a technical assistance hub was even more necessary following the pandemic that had negatively impacted an already vulnerable child care sector. LIIF submitted a coordinated proposal with All Our Kin, ParentChild+, and Ramapo for Children. It was accepted in April 2021.
How do we work with community stakeholders?
Centering racial equity and community voice are core values for LIIF and to solicit community input, the Family Child C.A.R.E. NYC planning partners conducted six focus groups in English and Spanish with 60 family child care providers.
We engaged in two-way dialogue around the technical assistance needs and experiences providers encountered before, during, and since the COVID-19 crisis. Our goal was to provide a space where providers could feel supported, build community, and also give direct feedback that would inform the planning of the technical assistance hub. It remains a priority to incorporate providers’ ongoing needs and perspectives.
To further our learning, LIIF also met with advocates from ECE On the Move, a group of NYC Early Childhood Educators that are advocating for provider rights and equal pay, and two Child Care Resource & Referral agencies (CCR&Rs): Chinese American Planning Council, Inc. and the Day Care Council of New York, Inc. Our goal in obtaining insight from these important stakeholders was to further understand the technical assistance being provided, identify any gaps in current services, and strategize on how we can further support family child care providers in NYC.
Together, the Family Child C.A.R.E NYC partners commit to leveraging our assets in the areas of business, financial, mental health, and inclusion supports through coordinated service delivery to NYC family child care providers.
Through our collaboration we are hoping to address the current disparity of services to providers based on their license status and funding, as well as the lack of coordinated services from technical assistance providers. No child care business owner, regardless of their partnership with the city or state, should lack access to supports or face difficulties finding resources and services.