BALTIMORE (WMAR) — Today, Baltimore City Mayor Jack Young announced new relief for child care providers.
Grant funding will be available to help them recover from the financial hit of being closed and operating under limited capacity.
"We are still feeling the impact of funding not being there for child care," said Imani Rose, director of Joshua’s Place.
For months, childcare providers have been hurting.
According to a survey in may, more than half of the state’s providers faced permanent closure because of a decline in enrollment.
"Not being able to serve children at our capacity...that put a lot on the finances that were coming in," said Rose.
That's why Rose said today’s announcement is such a relief.
Young announced a $4 million Child Care COVID-19 Stability Fund to provide grants to licensed providers in the city.
"This dedicated childcare assistance package is designed to help keep the doors of Baltimore children child care centers open and help parents get back to work," said Young.
The money can be used for lots of things, from payroll and rent to PPE and virtual learning.
"It is so beneficial. It will help us in many ways and now that we are helping many students with virtual learning as well, helping us to make sure we have the right bandwidth for the needs they have to get on the internet," said Rose.
The Family League of Baltimore and the Mayor’s Office of Children & Family Success will be administrating the funds, not only to help these small businesses out now, but to ensure future success and access to quality childcare in Baltimore.
"Making sure that our workforce has a stabilizing network in terms of these stewards of our most precious assets that we consider in our society and that’s our children. Especially our little ones, who they are giving them the key building blocks for learning so as they are prepared to enter school age, they’re prepared to enter school ready to learn," said Demaune Millard, President and CEO of the Family League of Baltimore.
The online application goes live on Thursday and providers will have a little over a month to apply. They hope to start distributing funds before Thanksgiving.