There are a number of federal financial
resources available that fund childcare programs. PHAs and other program staff
can suggest these resources to partners administering childcare programs or access
these funds themselves. Following is a short summary of these programs:
The Childcare and Development Fund (CCDF)
The Personal Responsibility
and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 eliminated federal childcare entitlements
and consolidated the four major sources of federal childcare subsidies for low-income
families into a single block grant to states-the Childcare and Development Fund
(CCDF). While Federal law sets forth minimum eligibility requirements for CCDF
assistance, states may impose additional limitations. For more information on
the CCDF, contact your state
CCDF administrator. Following are the federal eligibility requirements:
- Children must be under age 13;
- Family income can be no
more than 85 percent of the state median income (SMI) for families of the same
- The child must be living with parent(s) who are working
or attending a job training or educational program, OR the child must be receiving
child protective services or living with a parent and at risk of needing child
States vary greatly as to the maximum income
eligibility levels. Although at least ten states maintain maximum eligibility
at 75 percent of SMI, seven others cut off eligibility at 40 to 49 percent of
SMI, thereby serving only the lowest income families. To learn more about your
state's system, visit National
Childcare Information Center's State Profile page.
Start is a matching grant program where grantees must contribute 20 percent of
the total cost of the program. Traditionally the funding has been provided directly
to local agencies operating Head Start programs to provide services for economically
disadvantaged preschool children on a part-day and part-year basis. More recently,
Head Start grants have been given to programs that provide full-day and year-round
services. For more information on Head Start programs, see also the Administration
for Children and Families' Head Start page.
Title XX Social Service Block
This grant is a capped entitlement to states based on the
population of the state. These funds may be used for a wide range of social services,
Federal TANF or State MOE Funds
Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) and State Maintenance of Effort
(MOE) funds are potential resources for PHAs as they address their voucher recipients'
childcare needs. TANF funding can be spent directly on childcare services (although
states are then obligated to implement time limits on those individuals receiving
assistance) or a state may transfer up to 30 percent of its current TANF grant
to either its Childcare and Development Fund or its Social Services Block Grant.
Families Achieve Self-Sufficiency: A Guide on Funding Sources for Children and
Families through the TANF Program for additional information.
Department of Labor Welfare-to-Work
Department of Labor Welfare-to-Work grants (both formula and competitive)
can be used to provide childcare assistance to welfare (TANF) recipients.
Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP)
The Child and Adult Care Food
Program (CACFP) is a Federal program that provides healthy meals and snacks to
children and adults receiving day care. CACFP is administered by the U.S. Department
of Agriculture and reimburses eligible providers for their meal costs. Those eligible
for CACFP funds include day care centers, family and group day care homes, Head
Start programs, and day care services for children with disabilities. Children
ages 12 and younger are eligible to receive up to two meals and one snack each
day at a day care home or center through CACFP. Afterschool care snacks are available
to children through age 18.