Need Help to Pay for Child Care or Preschool?

preschoolThe cost of child care and preschool can take a huge chunk out of a low to moderate income family’s budget. Fortunately, there are subsidy programs available to Maui County families that can provide financial aid to make early learning and care more affordable. Now is the time to get familiar with eligibility requirements and application deadlines for the following programs to have the best chance of qualifying for aid for 2013–14.

Child Care Connection Hawai’i provides assistance for child care to low income parents who are working, in school, or in job training with children that are ages 0 – 12, or children with special needs that are under 18 years old. For more information, call the Maui Arbor Education and Training office at (808) 249-2461. The application period is open year-round.

Preschool Open Doors provides preschool tuition assistance for low-income families. There is no work requirement for parents. Priority is given to 4-year-olds and 3-year-olds with special needs. For more information, call 1-800-746-5620. The application period for the 2013-14 school year is March 1 through April 30, 2013

Good Beginnings Maui County Child Care Subsidy offers financial assistance for early childhood care and preschool to families of children from birth to under kindergarten age who do not qualify for assistance from other subsidies, or do not qualify for enough to make tuition affordable. Parents/guardians need to be working or in school/job training (this requirement may be waived in certain situations), and child care must be in a DHS licensed home or Center. Initial application period for 2013-14 is June 1 through July 15, 2-13. For more information, call the Good Beginnings Maui County Early Childhood Resource Center at (808) 242-1608.

Kamehameha Schools Pauahi Keiki Scholars Program provides tuition assistance to families whose children attend certain qualified preschools. Priority is given to children 3 and 4 years old who are of Hawaiian ancestry and who demonstrate financial need. For more information call (808) 573-7077. Initial application period is January 1 through April 30, 2013 for the 2013-14 school year.

Keiki O Ka Aina HELP Program provides assistance to qualified Native Hawaiian families to pay for child care for children under 13 years old (under 19 for some children with special needs) while parents are working or in school/job training. For more information call (808) 845-3454. Application period is open year round but there may be a waitlist pending availability of funds.

MEO Headstart provides no-cost preschool for very low income families. Priority is given to 4 year old children and 3 year olds with special needs. Call 249-2988 for more information. Initial application period is February 1 – April 30, 2013 for the 2013-14 school year.

MFSS Early Headstart provides no-cost infant/toddler care for very low income families of children from birth to under 3 years old while parents are working or in school/job training. Call 242-0900 for more information.

• In addition to these programs, individual preschools, Infant/Toddler Centers and churches sometimes offer families scholarship assistance. Ask the director if the school has scholarships available.

• To obtain a list of licensed child care providers or accredited programs, please call PATCH (People Attentive to Children) at (808) 242-9232.

Feeling overwhelmed by all of this information and not sure where to start? Call the Good Beginnings Maui County Early Childhood Resource Center at 242-1608 for personalized guidance on how, when and where to apply for the programs appropriate to your family’s situation.