We are taking applications for Childcare Assistance in Fairfield County, CT.

childcareassistformWe help make childcare affordable.

This benefit is limited to struggling single-parent families who are not receiving federal assistance and have annual incomes of $60,000 per year or less. A qualified applicant should not be receiving government assistance TANF (Welfare) or Food Snaps (SNAP).

The child be should be living at home in a single-parent family. Other factors affecting the welfare of the child and family may be considered.

The program is currently limited to the Fairfield County, CT area and will be expanded as funding permits.

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As more women and mothers enter the workforce, child care has become an increasingly important public policy issue. Many families, particularly those with modest incomes, have trouble financing its cost. Poor quality of care is another persistent problem. Low wages for child care workers tend to promote high turnover and inexperienced providers, and a patchwork of state regulations inadequately address these concerns. The federal and state governments have a number of programs that tackle some of these issues, but many problems still remain unsolved.

Child Care Affordability

Nearly half of working families and mothers who are able to find child care rely on family members, including parents and other relatives. The rest arrange for care through private providers. Parents often face steep costs and questionable quality of care.

Child care expenses can range anywhere from $4,000 to $10,000 a year per child. This expense can be prohibitive for lower and middle class families. One third of families with young children earn less than $25,000 per year and a family of two adults working full time on minimum wage salaries earns a combined income of only $21,000 a year. In 1997, the median annual income of the average female-headed household was $17,256. At such earning levels, child care expenses can easily consume one third or more of the household budget.

Child Care Quality

The quality of care provided to a child in his or her early years can be critical to the child’s development. Early childhood experiences, particularly in the first three years of life, are crucial. Brain development is heavily impacted by early environmental factors, which can promote or hinder learning skills from adolescence through adulthood. A healthy and safe early childhood setting can also prevent cognitive and behavioral disorders later in life, some of which are irreversible.

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