CTCARES for Family Child Care Program

Last updated June 1, 2020

CTCARES for Family Child Care is a new initiative from the Office of Early Childhood (OEC) designed to help licensed family child care home providers during the COVID-19 emergency.

We recognize that COVID-19 has been a challenge for family child care homes. This program will connect you with an OEC Family Child Care Network to offer grant funding and other supports to help you keep your business running.

How does the program work?

This program brings together a number of different supports, and we’re rolling them out as they become available. We’re also in the process of building additional Family Child Care Networks across the state to support licensed family child care providers. Once these networks are available, you can join them to tap into additional resources.

What are Family Child Care Networks?

Family Child Care Networks are community initiatives that have paid staff with expertise working with family child care providers. They offer a number of ongoing support services and resources to affiliated family child care providers, which may include professional development, coaching and consultation, and business and administrative supports. One of their greatest strengths is that each network is developed to meet the specific needs of their community. Because the networks are located in the geographic areas they serve, they are directly in touch with local providers and families. Current OEC-funded Family Child Care Networks include:

What CTCARES for Family Child Care supports are available now?

The following resources are open to licensed family child care programs right now.

Phone consultations with behavioral health experts

The Early Childhood Consultation Partnership (ECCP) is providing telephone and online opportunities to answer questions for social and emotional and behavior concerns for children up through age 5 in your care. They can also help with managing self-care and dealing with stress in adults. Visit ECCP’s website to find a consultant.

Spanish translation is also available for ECCP services. Please direct any call for ECCP service that requires a Spanish translator to ECCP Program Coordinator, Juan Ortiz, by email at jortiz@abhct.com or phone at 860-704-6378.

Access to webinars from the Connecticut Nurses’ Association

The CT Nurses’ Association is offering a series of webinars for family child care providers during COVID-19. They cover topics related to health and safety, cleaning, disinfection, and more.

Child care health consultations from the Connecticut Nurses’ Association

From May 18 through July 2, 2020, licensed family child care providers can get on demand support related to:

  • Practices related to germs, keeping kids safe, nutrition, physical activity, and other health topics
  • Getting access to other health related resources

Keep in mind that nurse consultants cannot offer medical services (e.g., recommendations about diagnosis and treatment), handle emergencies, or address OEC licensing issues.

Call 855-322-2242 (toll-free)
Monday through Friday, 7am to 5pm
Spanish-speaking support is available Monday through Friday, 3pm to 5pm

If you’re not connected to a consultant immediately, leave a message and they’ll return your call that day. For more information:

Mental health consultations for parents and caregivers by phone

If you or someone you know is struggling, Connecticut’s Talk It Out Line will help. It’s a dedicated line for parents and caretakers to get help with the stress and increased needs resulting from caring for their children during COVID-19.

What will the program offer in the future?

Right now, OEC is in the process of establishing additional Family Child Care Networks across the state to immediately support licensed family child care providers. Once they are up and running, we will provide information about how to join them.

Affiliation with a network is optional and completely free. Licensed providers who choose to join a Family Child Care Network will be eligible for enhanced supports, including:

Grants to support operational expenses during COVID-19

You’ll be able to apply for funding that will allow you to: 

  • Maintain smaller group sizes in your program
  • Purchase additional program supplies
  • Pay expenses to allow your program to remain open

Training and resources to help keep your business secure

  • Free 1-year membership to the National Association for Family Child Care (NAFCC)
  • Training on business practices
  • Access to online training

How do I apply?

Licensed family child care providers can start using the resources mentioned above (in “What supports are available now?”) immediately.

Once OEC has established the Family Child Care Networks, we will alert providers and let you know how to join so you are eligible for additional benefits. At that time, we will also have more information to share about how to apply for grants and other details.

Have questions?

We’re here to help. Send an email to oec.ccfcc@ct.gov to learn more about the CTCARES for Family Child Care program.