New funding to continue incentive grant program for Virginia child care providers
Gov. Ralph Northam yesterday announced $65.8 million in new funding will be used to increase access to child care and support child care providers amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
This funding will continue the incentive grant program for child care providers announced in April through the end of 2020. This program provides flexible cash assistance to child care providers to help offset operating costs and expenses associated with meeting health and safety guidelines. The Virginia Department of Social Services, in partnership with the Virginia Department of Education, has distributed more than $46 million in direct assistance to child care programs to date.
Nearly 2,672 child care programs in Virginia—nearly 45 percent—closed their doors at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, but thanks to more than $70 million in grants and other relief, many either have reopened or are starting to. Providers have reported that this funding is critical and many indicated that without additional financial support, they were unsure how long they could continue to operate.
The distribution of funds will be announced by the Virginia Department of Social Services in the coming weeks.
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