Financial assistance available for childcare providers amid coronavirus pandemic

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- The Tennessee Department of Human Services partnered with the Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee to make $10 million in new assistance available to help licensed childcare agencies impacted by coronavirus and the March 3 tornado disaster.

Beginning on Tuesday, March, 24, agencies will be able to apply for grant money to recoup some of their losses and expenses.

These grants are available to support licensed child care agencies with eligible expenditures including but not limited to:
• Lost Income resulting from closing due to the disaster/emergency. Grant awards will be based on the itemized lost operating income for the period of closure.
• Response and Recovery Operations Costs that occur as a result of the
disaster/emergency such as cleaning, utility repair, inspections, and substitute staffing. Grant awards will be based on the costs incurred.
• Equipment, Materials and Supplies that were lost or compromised as a result of the disaster/emergency such as area rugs, soft toys like stuffed animals, books, curriculum, learning tools and displays, damaged cabinets and shelving, supplies, and playground surfacing and equipment.
• Consultants and Coaches that are needed specifically related to disaster/emergency impacts such as helping children, caregivers, or staff through recovery, grief, anxiety, stress, or trauma.

The award amount for the Equipment, Materials & Supplies and Consultants and Coaches categories will not exceed $1,000 per slot of licensed capacity to care for children.

“The COVID-19 emergency and recent tornado disaster have combined to create substantial challenges for our child care partners,” said TDHS Commissioner Danielle W. Barnes. “These grants will provide the assistance agencies need to sustain critical staff and operations resources as they respond to and recover from these events. Parents, businesses, and children all depend on quality early childhood education that’s safe and healthy. "

The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee will be administering the grants in collaboration with TDHS. Licensed childcare agencies can learn more about grant opportunities and apply online by visiting www.childcaretennessee.com.

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