CCF and CCC Respond to COVID-19 Emergency Child-care Needs

Even as all in-person activities were canceled last spring due to COVID-19, the Child Care Funds (CCF) and Child Care Corporation (CCC) continued to deliver remote programming and essential services. When financial and child-care needs grew during the pandemic, we were able to provide emergency child-care financial relief to both members and non-members.

In partnership with our donors—the JPB Foundation, Segal Family Foundation, Element Capital, PAC, Robin Hood Foundation and Mastercard Impact Fund—the CCF and CCC assisted more than 7,500 members and other healthcare workers with emergency child-care financial relief in the amount of $3.5 million.

The Child Care Resource and Referral Services (CCR&R) team also helped members without child care find alternative providers throughout the five boroughs and Nassau, Suffolk and Westchester counties. Within the first seven months of the COVID-19 pandemic, 1,300 1199SEIU members received referrals, affording them much-needed peace of mind and support as they worked on the frontlines. Many of our members were adversely affected by program cancellations and summer day camp closures, and our staff provided 4,000 stipends in lieu of approved benefits to support their child-care needs, totaling nearly $7 million.

To measure the effectiveness of the Funds’ COVID-19 response, our Assessment and Compliance Department administered a survey to more than 24,000 healthcare workers.

Some of the significant findings include:
73 percent of healthcare workers used the financial assistance to pay for babysitting and in-home care.
70 percent indicated that the child-care emergency financial relief enabled them to maintain a consistent work schedule.
65 percent said they remain uncomfortable sending their children to outside care and prefer informal child-care options.
65 percent of healthcare workers’ children are participating in remote learning.

In addition, we learned that many families are spending $250 a week or more on child care or are facing financial hardship caused by unpaid leave from work, caring for children forced to stay home due to program and school closures.

At the start of the new year, the Funds had a waiting list of more than 1,000 healthcare workers in need of support. We anticipate the pandemic will continue to impact the child-care and financial needs of our essential workers, and we remain committed to providing support when and where it’s needed most.