May 28 | 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 we adjust to physical distancing requirements to slow the spread of COVID-19.

On our next call on Tuesday, June 2 at 11:30am, we will provide a short update on progress and discuss priorities for the recovery phase. As shelter-in-place mandates change, we are assessing priorities as we head into the recovery phase. If you have not already, please take 5-8 minutes to complete this simple survey to assess priorities. Thank you to those that have.

For more information about the effort and the coalition behind it, including weekly meeting information, please visit our web hub here. You’ll find an invitation to join our weekly Tuesday morning community calls and minutes from the last two months.


This Week’s Highlights

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


By the Numbers

29 applications for United Way Emergency Food & Shelter/CAREs Act Grants (requests = approx. $2M, available funding = $700K).

42 early childhood educators received COVID-19 Health & Safety training and stipends through Quality Matters in the last two months.

70 center-based classrooms received supplies last week.

42 child care homes received supplies last month.

2 supply deliveries expected from First 5 California in next six weeks (next one will be within the next two weeks).

417 new users of www.MontereyCountyChildCare.org within May 1 – 15.

2 joint memos were sent regarding emergency supports to all providers by the Child Care Planning Council, MAOF, and Bright Beginnings in the last three weeks.

5 different types of elected officials heard directly from community-based EC champions in the last 10 days.

51 early childhood educators are providing direct services and are receiving mental health supports from F5MC.

37 early childhood educators and service providers are providing remote services and are receiving mental health supports from F5MC.

80 Family, Friend, and Neighbor (FFN) child care providers are receiving mental health supports from F5MC.

237 children have been served with emergency child care for essential workers.

100 children (estimated) could still be served with emergency child care for essential workers (as of now, vouchers are set to expire June 30).

195 early childhood education providers enrolled for supplies vouchers.

$250,182 has been disbursed for emergency supplies. 

$211,340 is still available for emergency supplies (to be disbursed by end of 2020).

118 centers are registered with Resource & Referral. 

38 centers are operating now (32% of total registered).

328 licensed child care homes are registered with Resource & Referral. 

276 child care homes are operating now (84% of total registered).


Coming Up

  • Increasing communication and supports to child care providers as demand increases and more centers open, especially in light of changing mandates and guidelines. 
  • Continuing state-level advocacy during budgeting process and upcoming legislation. See legislative platform here.
  • Distributing the next round of supplies, estimated by June 15 (pending receipt from F5CA). We will be in touch with child care and education providers to coordinate pick-up.
  • Submitting guidelines to the Health Department for informal care solutions to families that provide a broad spectrum of options. 
  • Developing a brief on the economic impact and on COVID-related mandates and guidelines specifically for ECE in Monterey County.

Interesting Articles on Early Childhood Care & Education

Resources

  • 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. Call (831) 757-0775 to apply. (More information for school districts is coming soon.)
  • Essential worker child care vouchers are still available through June 30 — request child care here or call (831) 757-0775. 
  • COVID-19 related resources for families with young children including services, activities, and more are available at MontereyCountyChildCare.org and First 5 Monterey County
  • Mental health supports are available through the Health Department’s Forward Together initiative. Click here for more information.
  • We are seeing the “Find Child Care” blue badge (like the one at the top of this digest) on more and more of our partner’s websites. You, too, can have a badge that links to www.MontereyCountyChildCare.org with the most up-to-date information regarding child care. Find a downloadable flyer for finding care and other bilingual promotional materials, including the badge, here
  • 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 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.