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Eligible families may begin enrolling at []

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May 5, 2020 (San Diego) – San Diego essential workers and at-risk populations may be eligible to enroll their children in emergency subsidized child care so they can continue to work and protect our community during the COVID-19 crisis. Child Development Associates (CDA) and the YMCA of San Diego County Childcare Resource Service (YMCA CRS), which operate the two largest subsidized child care programs in the region, will begin processing vouchers for essential worker families starting today. 

On April 10, Governor Newsom released $50 million to pay for limited-term additional state subsidized child care vouchers for essential workers and at-risk populations. On April 17, San Diego County’s two Alternative Payment Program agencies, CDA and YMCA CRS, received contracts from the California Department of Education (CDE) for $5.1 million in child care vouchers and administrative costs of the program. An estimated 2,664 children will be provided with two months of childcare. 

Family eligibility and enrollment priorities include:

  1. At-Risk Populations including children at risk of abuse, neglect, or exploitation; children eligible through Emergency Child Care Bridge Program for Foster Children; families experiencing homelessness, or children of domestic violence survivors.
  2. Essential workers in the following sectors, whose total family income does not exceed the current income eligibility threshold and are not able to work remotely. Both parents must be essential workers to qualify. Review list of Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers.
  3. Families with children with disabilities or special health care needs whose IEPs and IFSPs include ELC services.
  4. Essential workers listed in #2 above, whose total family income exceeds the current income eligibility threshold and are not able to work remotely. 

Families who meet these requirements may begin the enrollment process at []. This emergency child care program has a streamlined enrollment process so families can get quickly connected to the care they need. Emergency child care services under this program will be available through June 30, 2020. 

“COVID-19 has highlighted the critical role child care plays in our community,” said YMCA CRS Executive Director Kim McDougal. “These vouchers are a lifesaver for families who need to work and for the child care providers who are open and want to care for families while following public health guidelines.”

“Confronting this crisis has required partnership and quick action across sectors in our community,” said CDA President and CEO Rick Richardson. “We are proud to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with our State agencies, philanthropy community, and other nonprofits to support our essential workers and child care field.”

In the alternative payment program, families receive subsidy vouchers to get care from the child care provider of the parents’ choice. This includes services from licensed child care centers or family child care homes, or license-exempt caregivers, such as friends or relatives who provide in-home care. Payments will be made directly to the child care provider.

Families seeking child care can call the YMCA Childcare Resource Service Resource & Referral line, staffed seven days a week to help parents find a child care provider that meets their needs. Call 800-481-2151 to reach an advisor. Learn more at

About Child Development Associates

Child Development Associates (CDA) is a community based, non-profit agency that has been providing child care and development services throughout San Diego County since 1974. At CDA, we believe in creating opportunities for families to prosper. Every day, we provide low income families access to high-quality early education so children can better succeed in school and life, affordable child care so parents can work or complete their education, and nutritious meals so children grow healthy bodies. For more information, visit 

About the YMCA of San Diego County 

The YMCA of San Diego County is the largest Y association in the nation, serving nearly 500,000 San Diego County residents and employing more than 5,500 people. Through a variety of programs and services focused on youth development, healthy living and social responsibility, the Y unites men, women and children - regardless of age, income or background - to nurture the potential of children and teens, improve the nation’s health and well-being, and provide opportunities to give back and support neighbors. The YMCA of San Diego County is dedicated to improving the quality of human life and to helping all people realize their fullest potential as children of God through the development of the spirit, mind and body. Visit to find your local YMCA or call (858) 292-YMCA (9622).

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