When Child Care Resource Center was established in 1976, it created a connection between families and child care providers in the San Fernando Valley. And when in 2013 the agency took on child care contracts in San Bernardino County, inland children and families gained access to this same critical resource. This month of April marks the 10 year anniversary of CCRC’s offices in San Bernardino and Victorville.
“When I look back 10 years, we had a few partners in the beginning but now folks come to us looking for ways to collaborate,” said CCRC San Bernardino Regional Director James Moses.
That collaboration among fellow advocates, legislators, community resource organizations, and more all serve to benefit families in San Bernardino County. Since contracts were transitioned from the San Bernardino County Superintendent of Public Schools to CCRC, the agency’s presence in the county has increased to meet the growing need in the community.
“When we took over, Victorville had 17 people there and now there are 40,” recalled CCRC President and CEO Dr. Michael Olenick. “We had to move to a bigger building because we’re providing more services. And we also provide large scale family and community play days out there. We have a really good turnout in Victorville and San Bernardino.”
A local mother of two, Alicia Pena attends those playdays and she watched her daughter Luna learn to walk at a CCRC playgroup.
“I feel like [CCRC] is such a hidden gem,” she said. “There’s so much out there for us parents that we’re not aware of and I think it’s something to look forward to. You come to the classes and it’s a bonding experience. I’ve also met other parents through CCRC and we’ve bonded and stay in touch. So, it’s a great way to make community.”
Add to that diaper and school supply drives, distribution events, our annual holiday book and toy drive, and much more. Plus, at the heart of our work in San Bernardino, families county-wide have expanded access to child care. This is thanks in part to our efforts to increase provider pay rates, advocating for more funds for child care financial assistance, and training and professional development support of local child care providers.
“For this most recent California Alternative Payments funding, which got increased two years ago, San Bernardino County got $63 million and Los Angeles County got $63 million,” said Olenick, noting the growing number of families moving inland.
To address the increased need among San Bernardino County families, CCRC has worked to expand the provider pool by supporting child care providers with training, small business development, COVID-19 supplies, and other resources.
“Just getting informed and just them being there, [CCRC] was a big crutch during the pandemic,” recalled Shakira Snowden, co-owner of Boobee’s Little Bunnies child care. “We were rolling in every week getting supplies and it was like [CCRC] became more than a partner, they became family.”
This mother-daughter duo credits CCRC’s support with being able to run a successful child care business for the past four years.
“We were only able to make it this far because we started out so strong with a partner like CCRC,” said Shelita Snowden, Shakira’s mother and business partner.
Empowering providers and uplifting families helps make the entire San Bernardino community stronger.
“Most of the cities within the county qualify as a child care desert, we have a significant number of underserved community,” said Moses. “CCRC has incredible capacity beyond what the community sees.”
“It’s been great having San Bernardino join us as part of CCRC family,” said Olenick.
CCRC helps families in San Bernardino and Los Angeles Counties pay for child care. Visit our website to learn more.