Editor’s note: This article has been updated to correct factual errors.
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Rhode Island students in need of child care services could soon receive some help from the state.
Gov. Dan McKee unveiled the Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP) for college students Wednesday, which will allow those who are eligible to receive assistance in paying for services.
Eligible students must meet the program’s income guidelines, work or attend a public institute of higher education for a minimum of 20 hours per week, and have a child under the age of 13 who is a U.S. citizen or legal resident.
The student must choose a CCAP-approved child care provider in order to receive financial assistance. The state will directly reimburse the provider up to a specified amount for the services, which will be based on the student’s income. The student will then be required to contribute the remainder of the payment.
“I am focused on raising per capita income for all families,” McKee said. “However, too many parents face barriers to advancing in their careers through higher education because they do not have the support they need.”
McKee recently expanded access to CCAP by permanently making attending college an eligible qualification. He said eligible students attending the Community College of Rhode Island, Rhode Island Collage and the University of Rhode Island may now qualify for the child care benefits.
“By providing vital assistance to those balancing college, work and parenthood, the Child Care Assistance Program removes a financial barrier that for too many of our students is too steep to overcome, and allows them to focus on academic pursuits and earn a college degree that is critical to long term financial security and success,” said CCRI Interim President Dr. Rosemary Costigan.
Those interested in applying for CCAP assistance can do so online through the R.I. Department of Human Services (DHS) or by completing a DHS-2 form and placing it into a secure drop box at the nearest DHS office.
“It is critical we provide RI families with a path to economic success,” said DHS Director Kimberly Merolla-Britto. “That’s why when a parent is looking to increase their education, earn a degree, and find a better job, we want to help support them every step of way.”