The Child Care Connection is using a $10,000 Community Foundation for South Central New York to complete a national accreditation process to benefit area childcare providers.
The Child Care Connection is a program of Catholic Charities of Delaware and Otsego Counties.
Cindy Drake of Oneonta is one of the childcare providers that works with Catholic Charities.
"Catholic Charities provides me all the things I need to provide ongoing childcare services," Drake said. "It's a great organization.
"They have all the information at their fingertips if I have any questions about licensing or feeding programs," Drake said. "I love working with them. They are very knowledgeable." Christy Houck, Child Care Connection spokeswoman, said 39 agencies statewide are going through the accreditation process.
"It's a huge undertaking and we wanted to hire a consultant to get through the process," Houck said.
Houck said New York is considering instituting a quality rating system for childcare providers similar to the five star rating you look at when choosing a hotel.
Otsego County currently has 1,295 regulated childcare slots, Houck said. She said a rating system would look at environment, programming and education.
Drake said Catholic Charities provides ongoing training, access to health care consultants and access to educational incentive grant funding to assist providers in upgrading their programs.
"It's amazing and it's free," Drake said. "I don't think a lot of people realize how much they offer. It's a great organization." Quality Assurance through the National Association of Child Care Resource and Referral Agencies accreditation process will be a requirement for agencies that provide Child Care Resource and Referral Services in the future.
For information about the Child Care Connection services or Child Care Resource and Referral visit www.childcareconnectionny.com For information about Catholic Charities of Delaware and Otsego Counties call 432-0061 or visit the office at 176 Main St., Oneonta.
If you have good news you'd like to share, call Associate Managing Editor Emily Popek at 432-1000 or (800) 721-1000, ext. 217; fax her at 432-5707; e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org; or write to her at P.O. Box 250, Oneonta, NY 13820.