EMERGENCY CHILD CARE BRIDGE PROGRAM
Crystal Stairs, in partnership with the Los Angeles County Department of Children & Family Services (DCFS), the Child Care Alliance of Los Angeles (CCALA) and its partner agencies worked together to launch the Emergency Child Care Bridge Program for Foster Children (Bridge Program).
The Bridge Program addresses child care needs as a barrier for families otherwise willing to bring a child in the foster care system into their home, and for parenting youth in the foster care system. It provides time limited vouchers for child care and child care navigator services for families to assist with accessing child care. There is also Trauma-Informed Care (TIC) training and coaching component for child care providers to enhance their ability to provide nurturing and safe environments for children. The Bridge Program is a time limited “bridge” to longer term child care solutions used at the time of placement to stabilize children in the best possible settings ensuring that caretakers have adequate support to balance their work and home lives.
Services: The Emergency Child Care Bridge Program has 3 components:
Child Care Navigators: Child Care Navigators are ready to assist eligible foster care resource families with finding a child care provider, Securing subsidized child care, completing child care program applications, and developing a plan for long-term child care appropriate to the child’s age and needs
Voucher: Eligible families may receive a time limited child care voucher to help pay for child care costs for foster children birth through age 5 and their siblings, while they work or go to school. This also includes foster children with exceptional needs and severely disabled children up to age 21.
Trauma-Informed Care: All Child Care Providers (no active care needed to attend) will receive access to trauma-informed care training on topics such as infant and toddler development, research-based trauma-informed best care practices, and much more. Click here for more information. Child Care Providers who are actively caring for a child in the Bridge Program will also receive coaching to assist them in applying training curriculum and learn strategies for working with children in foster care.
How do you become a Bridge Provider? A parent in the program selects the provider. Crystal stairs does not directly fund spaces in specific Child Care Centers or Family Child Care Homes. Our goal is to promote parental choice and empower parents to make informed choices about child care.
You can contact our Resource & Referral Department at (323) 421-1029 get on our referral list.
Need Child Care for your Foster child? Contact your social worker and ask them to send a referral to the Emergency Child Care Bridge Program.