In mid-March, Governor Gavin Newsom ordered non-essential businesses to close in response to the widespread transmission of COVID-19. While the number of positive cases climbed in Los Angeles and San Bernardino counties, essential workers struggled to find child care in a community where many providers had to close their doors.
Much needed help arrived on April 10th when the governor signed an executive order providing $50 million in child care funding for the children of essential workers, prioritizing child care for them and also vulnerable populations.
As this new funding became available, CCRC staff acted fast to develop an extensive outreach plan and promptly helped secure child care for thousands of essential workers. About 25% of those essential workers required child care during non-traditional hours, a challenge that was successfully navigated to ensure families had child care when then needed it. With the allocated funding, CCRC enrolled 2,236 families in child care between April 23rd and June 30th, 2020.
Essential workers in the health care sector make up 39% of enrolled families and people employed in local and state government, critical infrastructure support, emergency services, and the food and agriculture sectors represent a combined 41% of essential workers who received CCRC child care.
About two thirds of the families who applied to our program were single-parent households with two children, including at least one child between the age of 0-5. These single-parent families reported earning an average of $3,200 each month and 91% of them were seeking full-time child care so they could work.
In addition to providing child care, CCRC has distributed supplies to enrolled families during a series of drive-through supply drives. We’ve provided hundreds of thousands of diapers, wipes, and other personal care items, backpacks and school supplies, age appropriate books, bags of non-perishable and fresh food items, and personal protective equipment to thousands of community members in Los Angeles and San Bernardino.
If we didn’t know it before, we now know that our physical and economic health depends on the work of essential employees, many of whom have continued to work throughout the pandemic! Providing safe and healthy environments for children is imperative to the well-being of our overall community and CCRC remains committed to helping all families thrive.