Finally a one-stop shop for finding child care in D.C.!

When I was three months pregnant I started my search. At the time I wanted the best quality care for my unborn child anticipating that I would go back to work full-time. I was looking for accredited centers with bright and beautiful space, but most importantly caring and patient teachers. I only wanted the very best for my child. I quickly learned that I had very few options, despite being willing and able to pay for child care. The wait lists at the most desired centers were up to four years. Really?

I was a little nervous, but did start reviewing the centers recommendation on listserves dedicated for moms and asking my friends – but they could only offer empathy, having been through the same thing with their children. So my six-month quest began. I went on tours of many centers of varying quality. Among them, a center that “knew” there was asbestos, but according to their director they had it “under control.” At another center, when I asked why they weren’t accredited, the director replied it was too labor intensive and costly for the size of their program. Both of these centers were nevertheless quite in demand. I was starting to get a sense that my selection might involve some compromises.

The process was a shock for me, but for my husband it was the cost for full-time child care that was the rude awakening. I imagine there are a lot of parents like us who start this daunting task not realizing the reality of the limited resources available for parents.

Having gone through this daunting process not too long ago myself, I was thrilled to browse the newly launched web site dedicated to all things child care, launched by DC Child Care Connections Whether you live in ward 7,8 , 5 or 3, the newly launched a "resource and referral" agency can help you navigate an often overwhelming journey of finding quality child care. They can also make referrals and provide information about state licensing requirements. Parents and guardians, take advantage of the free and confidential phone service to help you find licensed child care in your neighborhood – call 202-862-1111.

Finally, a one-stop shopping center for parents! DC Child Care Connections also has a resource library filled with books, brochures and information to help overwhelmed parents and providers with their most pressing child care questions. Call them, reach out, use the resources, spread the word to other parents. And let us know what you think!

DC Child Care Connections 1725 I Street, NW, Suite 1000.