Support our early childhood educators image

Support our early childhood educators

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The lack of quality, reliable, and affordable childcare as a major barrier to attracting and retaining a stable workforce. Employers struggle to fill vacant positions in a highly competitive marketplace, while childcare centers are closing due to their inability to hire staff.

YCCF is focusing our grantmaking on helping lower-income people achieve economic mobility. Quality childcare is critical to a child’s development and to a parent’s ability to sustain employment so the whole family can thrive.

The primary challenge is the low wages typical in the early childhood industry that make it difficult to attract and retain qualified staff. The average childcare teachers earns $10 per hour and are responsible not only for keeping children safe, but also for helping them develop and be ready for kindergarten. Childcare centers have difficulty raising salaries, because they know that there is a limit in how much families can afford to pay.

To address the issue of attracting and retaining qualified childcare staff, the York County Early Childhood Educator Awards puts money directly in the pockets of teachers, showing sincere appreciation for their commitment to quality early learning for children and to continuing their own professional development.

The program makes financial awards available to early learning centers based on their Keystone STARS certification level and the educational attainment of their staff. The goal is to secure enough quality childcare spots to meet the needs of York County employees with children. The program focuses on retaining skilled childcare teachers by providing financial incentives to stay in their jobs and advance their education.

Your gift to the Early Childhood Educator Awards fund will recognize the important role that early childhood educators play in our lives, and reward them for their dedication to our children's future. Each dollar raised goes directly to the teachers.