Childcare is Essential to Essential Workers

Mariah Lee was working long hours as a nurse, and her family needed childcare.  Before the pandemic, she and her husband both worked full-time, but they still could not afford to put their two-year-old into preschool. “We barely make ends meet, living paycheck to paycheck,” she says. Then Mariah was referred to CCCR through the Early Learning Coalition (ELC) so we could help her family with scholarship assistance.

How could essential workers like Mariah go to the hospital to care for COVID-19 patients, stock grocery shelves or keep ambulances running, without someone to care for their young children?

When the COVID-19 stay-at-home recommendations were announced, CCCR initially closed all four of its early childhood development centers out of safety considerations and to help flatten the curve of the virus, yet ultimately we had to reconsider. How could essential workers like Mariah go to the hospital to care for COVID-19 patients, stock grocery shelves or keep ambulances running, without someone to care for their young children? CCCR decided to partner with the ELC and re-open Child’s Path to care for the children of those on the front lines during the pandemic.

When Mariah came to us she said, “We would really like our two-year-old in a safe and educational setting with high-quality, trusted caregivers. We would be grateful for any assistance you could offer us at this time.” We awarded her child a partial scholarship that made high-quality early education and care affordable for their family.

 Mariah continues, “During this hard time, we are all experiencing a lot of difficulties. Child’s Path welcomed us with open arms and has allowed us to put my son somewhere safe while we work full-time to provide for our family during this unfortunate time. If this care and scholarship were not available during the pandemic, my husband would not be able to work and consequently would not be able provide the essentials for our family. I am a nurse and, while caring for others is my passion, right now the safety of my family is what is most important to me. Knowing that Child’s Path is taking special precautions to make sure that not only is my son is safe, but everyone’s children are safe really helped ease my mind. 

 “If this care and scholarship were not available during the pandemic, my husband would not be able to work and consequently would not be able provide the essentials for our family.”

During my son’s first day we were greeted at the door, and I could immediately tell he was going to be in good hands. My son is two and has never been to a childcare facility before. Both Jodi and Heather were very caring and made sure he felt comfortable upon arriving. Although I was unable to go inside the building due to the pandemic, I could tell the facility was very secure, clean and my son was going to flourish in their care. I decided to call a couple hours into his day to check on him, and Heather and Jodi both went above and beyond to check on him and let me know he was enjoying himself. Upon picking him up from the facility, I was greeted at the door and he was brought out to me. You could tell he had an amazing day! I can’t wait for him to grow and express himself while at Child’s Path. 

Thank you to all the teachers who are making it possible for safe and affordable care during this pandemic. Thank you to Jodi and Heather as well for everything you do. It does not go unnoticed and my family really appreciates all you have done for us.” 

–Mariah Lee, new parent at Child’s Path

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