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  Research conducted with DCFS staff, resource parents, and child care providers revealed the following challenges that must be addressed:
1) Accessibility to and Clarity of DCFS Child Care Information
 Difficulty acquiring information about available child care support  Unclear, fragmented information
 Lengthy eligibility determination and service connection processes
2) Affordability of Child Care
 Affordability/cost of child care
 Limited access to subsidized child care
 Care for a child with special needs (e.g., medication, training)
  A resource parent was told that child care costs would not be covered for foster parents and then was given conflicting information that child care costs would be covered – this inconsistent information leaves resource parents confused and unsure about who to turn to for help.
 Missing work may increase the financial burden on resource parents, “He has to work and for a month he hasn't been able to work because he can't find proper child care because he doesn't have the funding."
  A DCFS employee commenting about the process of child care approval, “[U]ntil we can get approved or reviewed for approval, we’ll advise them to go down to DPSS and apply for money to be caregivers, so there’s a lot of initial out of pocket expenses that they have.”
  A resource parent commented, “[W]e’re getting like $700 for the placement we have now, so okay, so if all of that goes to child care, then we’re still supplementing it, which is not a big deal but, you’re constantly thinking that through, like ok and all that money that we’re getting we can’t spend on her, we can’t buy her clothes with that, we can’t buy her diapers with that, ‘cause we’re spending it all on child care.”

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