We are excited to announce that the Partnership has been named the recipient of a$1.77 million Early Head Start-Child Care (EHS-CC) Partnership grant! The funding is awarded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services through the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) in order to expand access to high-quality care for infants and toddlers.
Early Head Start is a free, comprehensive child development and family support program for low-income expectant women and families with infants and toddlers ages birth to three. In 2009, the Partnership became the grantee for the Durham Early Head Start (DEHS) program, which currently serves 108 families and children throughout Durham County each year. DEHS offers both home-based and center-based care programs and is a collaboration between the Partnership, Chapel Hill Training-Outreach Project, Inc., the Center for Child & Family Health, and three local five-star child care centers.
The EHS-CC Partnership Grant allows DEHS to serve additional children in high-quality child care centers. The grant establishes funding to partner with local child care providers to provide full-day, year-round services that meet the needs of low-income working families and enhance access to high-quality child care.
Last year, DEHS conducted a Community Assessment that found that nearly 70% of children between the ages of 0 and 3 are in need of child care, with more than 450 children age 0-3 on the waiting list to receive child care subsidy. There are currently an additional 450 children and families on the DEHS waiting list.
“We know that there is a high level of poverty in our community and an immense need for child care and family support,” said Laura Benson, Partnership Executive Director. “Securing this grant is essential to expanding comprehensive high-quality services to serve more of Durham’s most vulnerable children and families. We are thrilled to be able to convene additional community partners who share our goal of preparing children for success in school and in life.”
The Partnership recently accepted proposals from child care centers interested in becoming a DEHS child care partner and is in the process of selecting centers to serve the 64 new slots provided by the grant. Enrollment is expected to begin in August 2015.