Southfield (CW50) – It has been and always will be the case that finding the right child care for your children is incredibly important.

Now more than ever, finding the right child care option plays a critical role in our society. The pandemic has left many not working, working from home, or finding new work. There has also been children born during the pandemic that may have had at least one parent at home throughout the last year and a half, and with people going back to work, the need for the best child care is at an all-time high.

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United Way for Southeastern Michigan and the City of Detroit have teamed up to create Connect4Care Kids. Connect4Care Kids is a free, centralized resource designed to make it easier and less overwhelming for families with young children to find and understand options for early childhood education and care. United Way for Southeastern Michigan and the City of Detroit launched Connect4Care Kids last year. The focus was originally on Detroit and is now being expanded throughout Wayne County.

While there has been a great deal of disruption in child care this past year, hundreds of parents and caregivers have used Connect4Care Kids to start the application process.

Jeffrey Miles from United Way for Southeastern Michigan said, “Especially as the world opens post-pandemic, access to early childhood learning and care are vital to helping children and families not only reacclimate, but thrive. We know the benefits for early childhood learning on the child’s development and, as we’ve seen recently, it’s vital to parents returning to work.”

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Parents can gain access to Connect4Care Kids’ resources: by visiting Connect4CareKids.org or texting KIDS to 42273.

Connect4Care Kids can help families understand their eligibility for programs to help with childcare costs and connect them to programs with open spots. Especially as new funding for childcare resources is discussed at the local, state and federal levels, mostly around the American Rescue Plan.

As the school year approaches and in some areas is already here, Connect4Care Kids also provides early childhood education options for parents with children old enough to attend pre-school.

Community Connect Host Lisa Germani, with Jeffrey Miles, Senior Director of Center for Early Childhood Excellence at United Way For Southeastern Michigan

Jeffrey Miles, Senior Director of the Center for Early Childhood Excellence at United Way for Southeastern Michigan, joins Lisa Germani on Community Connect to breakdown how Connect4Care Kids works and what the state of child care is in the state of Michigan.

Learn more or use the resource at Connect4CareKids.org or UnitedWaySEM.org

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Watch Community Connect, Saturday at 7am on CW50