Child care is not just a necessity for working parents; it plays a vital role in our society as the backbone of our economy, enabling families to thrive. High-quality child care has far-reaching effects on our community and economy as a whole. There are so many reasons that we, as a community, love accessible child care. These five shed light on the importance of making sure there that our community has child care resources available for everyone that needs it.
High Quality Child Care Boosts Economic Growth:
Investing in high-quality child care has a positive impact on the economy. When parents can participate in the workforce confidently, productivity increases, and businesses thrive. An investment of $257.5 million in infant and toddler care (which is the estimated annual amount needed to make sure everyone in San Mateo County has the care they need, just take a look at the 2022 Child Care Needs Assessment) would yield $484 million in economic output.
During the COVID-19 Pandemic, we saw the enormous impact on the economy when childcare was not available. The lack of accessible and affordable child care options during that time resulted in many parents, particularly mothers, reducing their hours or leaving the workforce altogether, which led to a significant loss in productivity and economic output.
The child care industry itself generates jobs and contributes to economic growth. All this to say, an investment in child care is not just an investment in families, but also in the overall San Mateo County economy, and we love that!
High Quality Child Care Empowers Working Parents:
Accessible and high-quality child care empowers working parents, especially mothers, to pursue careers without compromising their children’s well-being. Time and time again, it has been shown that women’s labor force participation increases with access to reliable child care, leading to greater financial independence and career advancement. Closing the child care gap enables parents to contribute fully to the workforce while providing a nurturing environment for their children, and we love to see parents and children thriving!
High Quality Child Care Fosters Social Equity:
Ensuring that everyone has access to high quality child care is essential for fostering social equity. Affordable and accessible child care allows families from all socioeconomic backgrounds to benefit from quality early education, creating more learning and development opportunities for all children. Research shows that children from lower income families who have access to quality child care are more likely to break the cycle of poverty. By ensuring that child care is affordable and available to all, regardless of income, we create a more equitable, inclusive community, where every child has an equal chance to succeed. Creating a sense of belonging for every single family in San Mateo is one of the most important ways that we, as a community can show love.
High Quality Child Care Promotes Early Childhood Development:
Children benefit tremendously from high-quality child care– it fosters early childhood development and sets a strong foundation for future success. A study by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development found that children who attended high-quality child care demonstrated better outcomes throughout their school years, and were more likely to graduate high school. A nurturing child care environment promotes cognitive, emotional, and social growth. It helps children develop their language skills, problem-solving abilities, and overall school readiness. Closing the child care gap ensures that all children have equal access to these critical developmental opportunities, and we love to see the youngest members of our community succeed throughout their lives!
High Quality Child Care Builds Strong Communities:
Accessible child care plays a crucial role in building strong and vibrant communities. Child care centers are frequently the hubs of our community, bringing families together and creating a support network. Communities with quality child care programs experience lower crime rates and higher civic engagement, contributing to overall community well-being. When children receive high-quality care during their early years, they are more likely to invest in the community that invested in them, becoming engaged citizens and neighbors, giving back to their communities for years to come. To us, that is the meaning of love!
The benefits of accessible and high-quality child care extend far beyond individual families. By closing the child care gap, we empower working parents, promote early childhood development, foster social equity, boost economic growth, and build stronger communities. Recognizing the intersectional impact of child care allows us to appreciate the importance of investing in and ensuring access to quality c