At the Child Care Resilience Program, we are committed to the improving child care in Illinois and beyond.
Children Matter. We know that early care sets the stage for children’s later health and well-being. The majority of children under age five (12.5 million) spend some portion of their week in child care. In many ways, high quality child care can support family and economic well-being as well as the development and school-readiness of young children. However, there may be some risks that go along with child care. For example, studies show that children with more hours in out-of-home care have higher obesity rates than those with less time in care.
Child Care Providers Matter. Providers may also have some higher risks. In general, child care providers are less healthy than others who are like them (for example, with similar education and income). The health of providers is important in and of itself but provider health also impacts the quality of care they can provide to children.
To Better Support and Improve Child Care, We Need to Know More. Despite their possible risk and their potential influence on children’s development, there are few studies focused on the health and health practices of child care providers. Even fewer studies have targeted family child care providers, those who care for children in their own home.
We are currently studying the health of family child care providers and the children in their care. Stay tuned as we share findings and ideas for supporting these providers.