Child Care & Early Education

A Desire to Learn is the Key to Your Child's Later Success

YWCA Elgin Commitment Statement: The YWCA Elgin ensures that all children have equal access to comprehensive, high-quality educational programs, including continuous development support. The YWCA Elgin feels early education plays an important role in reducing poverty and inequality by giving all children the opportunity to reach their full potential. When children get off to a strong start, they are more likely to grow up to be contributing members of their communities, helping to create a stronger economy.

It's a Fact!
 Many families rely on care outside of the home. 61% of children under age six in the United States are in some kind of care outside the home, including children of both low-income working parents and non-working mothers¹. Nearly 13 million pre-school aged children, including six million infants and toddlers, spend part of their day being cared for by someone other than their parents.¹¹
Head Start serves many children who live in poverty, yet many more children are in need of Head Start services. In 2002, more than half of the children served in Head Start Centers came from families making between $9,000 and $11,999 a year.² However, nearly 40% of children eligible for Head Start do not receive services.
Working women and families rely on many forms of care for their children. However, low-income families' choices are limited due to the high cost of care, transportation barriers, and lack of affordable and accessible options in their communities.³
•  Many low-income children are unable to access needed care and not receiving the childcare for which they are eligible. According to the General Accountability Office, states give families on welfare and families transitioning off welfare higher priority than other low-income working families when child care funds are unable to cover all who apply.³³
¹  National Conference of State Legislatures: Child Care and Early Education Issues Overview
¹¹ Fight Crime Invest In Kids (April 2004) Early Childhood Development Programs
² Children's Defense Fund (February 2003) Head Start Fact Sheet
³ Kathryn Tout, Martha Zaslow, Angela Romano Papillo and Sharon Vandivere (September 2001) Work Supports for Families and Development Opportunity for Young Children. Urban Institute.
³³ Child Care: Recent State Policy Changes Affecting the Availability of Assistance for Low-Income Families. GAO-03-588. Washington, D.C.: May 2003.
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Child Care Resources
 Application for Child Care  Assistance

Free Preschool & Early Head Start in Elgin
~ Two Rivers Head Start Agency
Do you want to build a better life for your preschool age child? Two Rivers Head Start offers free half day preschool for income eligible children and full day preschool for a minimal fee. Learn More
Ready for Kindergarten
~District U-46
Did you know that getting ready for Kindergarten starts at birth? Is your child ready?  District U-46 has a "Give Me Five!" program to help prepare your child for entry into Kindergarten. Learn More
Activities for Children 
~ US Department of Education
As a parent, you can help your child want to learn in a way no one else can. That desire to learn is a key to your child's later success. The US Department of Education has created an excellent list of activities for infants through age 5. Learn More

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