Relief for home-based child care

HONOLULU — Hawai‘i Community Foundation (HCF) has launched the Home-Based Child Care (HBCC) Emergency Fund to provide relief to licensed home-based child care providers across the state. The Fund will support providers currently serving the children of health care and other essential workers across Hawai‘i and also seeks to lessen the potential for permanent closure of child care programs, especially in areas where home based care is the primary option for families. Any licensed family child care provider licensed to operate in Hawai‘i and in good standing with DHS is eligible to apply.

“Child-care programs are the foundation of a functioning local economy because they make it possible for parents to get back to work,” says Justina Acevedo-Cross, director of Community Grants and Initiatives for Hawai‘i Community Foundation. “With this program, the Hawai‘i Community Foundation hopes to alleviate the stress that providers are currently experiencing due to uncertain income, fluctuating enrollment, and the need to adhere to new health and safety guidelines—all of this which will allow the providers to focus on the children in their care.”

Home-based child care is often the most familiar, flexible, convenient, personal, and affordable option for families, and often is the best or only option available for care during nontraditional hours, like evenings, nights, and weekends. While Congress authorized $3.5 billion through the CARES Act to support child care, there is still uncertainty surrounding how it will be distributed, and if it will not cover all providers. Without immediate action to maintain the supply of home-based child care, near-term efforts to rebuild the economy may be stalled, and may impact young children’s development in the short and long-term.

Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis and will be due by Tuesday at 11 a.m. each week. HCF is committed to disbursing awards as quickly as possible. Funds, based on availability, will be awarded in the amount of $1,000 – $3,000 per applicant based on demonstrated need. Programs that are serving children of essential workers and/or accept subsidy in high-needs communities will be prioritized in the selection process.

Applications can be found at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/6TBGJ2F. For those who do not have access to internet, staff at the PATCH office per island may be able to assist with completing the application over the phone.

The Home-Based Child Care Emergency Grant program is funded by $100,000 from the Home Grown program of the Health Federation of Philadelphia and $100,000 from the Hawai‘i Resilience Fund of Hawai‘i Community Foundation. HCF is partnering with People Attentive to Children (PATCH) and Early Childhood Action Strategy to make the emergency grant program a reality.

More info: https://www.hawaiicommunityfoundation.org/grants/home-based-child-care.

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