June 12 | Weekly Digest: COVID-19 Response & Recovery for Child Care & Wellbeing

Bright Beginnings Advocacy, Community

Emergency Response & Recovery Plan

Our goal is to ensure that young children have quality, nurturing, and safe child care and education as physical distancing requirements continue to slow the spread of COVID-19.

We’ve heard there is Zoom meeting fatigue. Therefore, the community call on Wednesday, June 17 at 1:30pm has been CANCELED, and all are welcome to join the Early Childhood Development Advisory Group meeting on Thursday, June 18 at 8:30am where we will have an in-depth discussion about priorities for the recovery phase to support child care and early learning. Please RSVP here.

For more information about this effort and the coalition behind it, please visit our web hub here.


This Week’s Highlights

A few highlights from this last week are shared below. Previous Weekly Digests are available here

By the Numbers

34 local child care centers are operating now (29% of total registered).
284 local child care homes are operating now (87% of total registered).
456 enhanced referrals completed since the start of COVID-19.
371 children have been served with emergency child care for essential workers.
274 early childhood education providers enrolled for supplies vouchers.
$321,806 has been disbursed for emergency supplies.
$139,716 is still available for emergency supplies (to be disbursed by end of 2020).
2,500 masks are being distributed to child care providers today, thanks to a generous donation from Monterey-Salinas Transit (MST) and the Monterey County Office of Emergency Services.
69,120 diapers and 99,600 baby wipes are being distributed to child care providers today, thanks to a generous donation from First 5 California. The next shipment of cleaning supplies will arrive in a few weeks.
3rd joint memo was sent to all providers by the Child Care Planning Council, MAOF, and Bright Beginnings, with important emergency information and resources. Find the memo in Spanish and English here.

Resources

  • Quality Matters will host a Leadership Network on June 17th for center-based directors and site supervisors to learn from colleagues who have opened their centers under COVID-19 implementing physical distancing guidelines and discuss strategies to protect staff and children.
  • Monterey County is allowing all child care providers to open programs with modifications to all families, including non-essential workers. To support your efforts, California ECE State Master Plan includes guidance on drop off and pick up; group sizes and ratios; health and safety, etc. Click here for more resources available to you and your staff. In addition, there is a 10-page guide that can help child care providers during COVID-19. For additional help opening your program, contact the Resource and Referral, MAOF at (831) 757-0775.
  • The State of California released a guidebook for the safe reopening of schools, Stronger Together. This guide provides information and scenarios to help districts as they decide how to proceed using physical distancing and health/safety guidelines. 
  • Emergency supplies vouchers for all types of child care providers (except those part of school districts) are still available and are valid through September 30. To apply for funds, complete this form as soon as possible and email it to RRMC@maof.org. A specialist will follow up to confirm your application and details for receiving funds, as available. More information for school districts is coming soon.
  • Resiliency supports are available through the Health Department’s Forward Together initiative. Click here for more information.
  • “Find Child Care” purple badge (like the one at the top of this digest) is available here. It links to www.MontereyCountyChildCare.org with the most up-to-date information regarding child care. 
  • Free COVID-19 testing is now available. Child care and education providers are strongly encouraged to get tested. Appointments are required. Register by clicking here or by calling 888-634-1123. More information, including times and locations, can be found here on these posters — please post and share within your networks.
  • United Way launched an early learning fund to support child care during COVID-19. Check out the video here. Please share with your networks — donations are being accepted on an ongoing basis.

It Takes a Coalition 

The emergency response providing coordinated solutions for child care and education is led by a coalition of early childhood champions, united under the Bright Beginnings Strategic Framework to better support all young children and their families, to prepare every child for life and school. This coalition is ever-growing:

4th Monterey County Supervisorial District
30th California Assembly District
Building Healthy Communities
CAPSLO
Carmel Unified School District
Child Care Planning Council
Child Development Centers and Continuing Development Incorporated
Children’s Council
Early Development Services
First 5 Monterey County
Go Kids, Inc.
Health Department
MAOF Resource & Referral & Alternative Payment Program
Monterey Peninsula Unified School District
Natividad Medical Center
North Monterey County Unified School District
Office of Education – Early Learning Program
Office of Education – Educational Services
Public Health Office
Quality Matters
Salinas City Elementary School District
Social Services – Child Abuse Prevention Council
United Farmworkers Foundation
United Way of Monterey County
YMCA

A special thanks to the coordinating team and major funders: Bright Beginnings Backbone, Child Care Planning Council, First 5 Monterey County, MAOF Resource & Referral, Quality Matters, and the United Way of Monterey County.

For more information, please contact sonja@brightbeginningsmc.org.