$5 Million to Support, Strengthen State’s Child Care Landscape

Zero to Five Montana receives $5 million to support, strengthen state’s child care landscape

Aug. 17, 2022 (HELENA, Mont.) – Zero to Five Montana is excited to announce new programs and initiatives to help support and strengthen the state’s child care landscape bolstered by $5 million in funding from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), granted through a Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services competitive process.

ARPA allocated supplemental funding to the existing Child Care and Development Block Grant to support child care business stabilization and expansion. Starting this fall, Zero to Five Montana will launch business training specific to child care entrepreneurs, community-level consultation to support implementation strategies, a business mentorship program, technical assistance related to child care business planning and a web-based resource hub with toolkits, community child care business models and resources.

“Access to affordable child care continues to be a challenge for many families across Montana and has a direct impact on our state and local economies. As an early childhood policy organization dedicated to systems-change, we are thrilled for the opportunity to support child care capacity growth and innovation by focusing on individual businesses and communities. What we learn from community leaders and employers over the next couple of years will help shape future policy directions,” said Caitlin Jensen, Zero to Five Montana executive director. Understanding that each community in Montana is different, this grant will allow Zero to Five Montana to gather insight into how public/private partnerships can help meet the demand for child care across the state.

“The Early Childhood and Family Support Division is very excited to be working with Zero to Five Montana to offer long-term business supports to Montana’s child care providers. This specialized training and technical assistance project is part of a larger continuum of support for our child care industry aimed at strengthening business practices for child care businesses and enhancing the availability, affordability, and accessibility of high-quality child care for children and families in Montana,” said Patty Butler, bureau chief, Early Childhood Services, Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services.

About Zero to Five Montana

Zero to Five Montana is a nonpartisan organization working to make a lasting difference in children’s lives by improving access to quality early care and education, forging business partnerships to support families, building cross-sector collaborations to better understand the economic impact and business needs related to early care and education, and promoting efforts and policies that support families and foster community engagement.

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