Safe, Reliable Child Care Helps To Get Workers Back on the Job

United Way Provides Support to Reopen Centers Amid Pandemic

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As the economy struggles to get back on its feet amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the key role childcare providers play in the recovery has come to light. Without safe, reliable childcare many workers cannot go back to work.

United Way of Western Connecticut is a long-standing, strong supporter of quality childcare. We created an innovative program in Danbury, called Cora’s Kids, to increase the number of licensed family childcare homes, while also providing supports to those who were already licensed. We also provide significant funding to childcare centers, making center-based care more affordable for low-income families.

Many childcare providers lost many or all of their clients when the economy shut down. Others had to adapt to new ways of providing care to ensure safety, especially if they were caring for children of essential workers.

To ensure that providers could survive and reopen safely, we assisted both family care providers and centers. Cora’s Kids helped family home care providers submit applications to the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) to regain lost wages. They also helped providers learn proper cleaning and sanitizing procedures and obtain personal protective equipment (PPE.

United Way of Western Connecticut also supported child care centers from New Milford to Stamford, with grants to keep them afloat when they lost clients and help them gear up as the economy restarted. Children’s Learning Centers (CLC) in Stamford is a center that received a significant grant.

"We are extremely grateful for this grant from United Way of Western Connecticut. United Way's support and partnership is vital to helping CLC fulfill its mission," stated CLC Chief Executive Officer Marc Jaffe. 

“The pandemic has been difficult for everyone, but it has highlighted the fact that quality childcare is indispensable to an effective workforce,” said Elizabeth Quiñonez, the Early Child Care Initiative Manager at United Way.

"We want people on the front lines—nurses, EMTs, grocery store workers—to feel like their kids are safe and well cared for while they do their jobs.”

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