As the country re-opens with workers cautiously returning to the workplace, American working families are facing another crisis: childcare. Most childcare facilities were forced to close and those that have re-opened have experienced dramatic increases in operational costs with significant decreases in capacities, leaving families with even more expensive childcare costs with few available options.
Several new and innovative programs have emerged during the pandemic and offer creative and supportive resources for some families facing childcare issues.
Remember the “Y”? For over 100 years, the YMCA has been a worldwide champion in addressing the needs of its communities and the Covid crisis is no exception. Most YMCA facilities are now offering all day learning programs in a safe and clean environment that follows CDC guidelines and costs are based on socio-economic factors. Find yours local YMCA here.
Another alternative program that emerged due to the Covid childcare crisis is known as Podupnow. . Podup is a community based model that offers nationwide solutions for childcare issues, connecting families and communities with similar struggles while offering support and structure for a safe, creative and flexible environment.
Access to affordable childcare was a problem for many working families long before the pandemic, and continues to be one during it. In the absence of government incentives to expand access to affordable health care we can only hope that the pandemic has spurred new creative approaches by private and non-profit organizations to help expand this crucial need.