Resource and Referral Agencies Help Parents and Providers

What is a resource and referral agency?

At their core, resource and referral agencies (R&Rs) are structured to support parents and caretakers looking for child care and for child care providers looking for various supports, from building a business to education. Each county or region has its own specified R&R agency; for San Bernardino County it is the Child Care Resource Center, and for the west end it is Pomona Unified School District Resource and Referral Department. Within their essential work of helping parents and providers, R&R services benefit the greater communities they serve through education, access, and advocacy. National, state, and local organizations coordinate their efforts to inform and create policies for the betterment of families and child care providers. In California, the Resource and Referral Network is an established system of R&Rs from across the state advocating to increase access to high quality care experiences for all families, address child care deserts, or those areas where the availability of care is lacking, and ensure providers are earning a fair wage, among other things.

How does resource & referral support parents and caregivers?

Parents and caregivers can connect with their R&R to receive a refined list of available providers based on specific criteria, like location, schedule, and type of environment. Types of environments include:

  • Center-based: A center setting often involves the care of larger groups of children in a commercial building. They are either owned and operated privately or associated with a larger corporation. They can be a part of a community center, religious organization, or non-profit.
  • Family Child Care: This is care offered from the home of a licensed provider. Many serve families with traditional and non-traditional schedules. Children may be of the same group, preschool age for example, or in mixed-age groups.
  • State-Preschool: State preschools are free programs for families who meet state income and family size criteria. These programs receive state funding and typically serve children 3 to 4 in preschool or pre-kindergarten classrooms.

Outside of referrals, SB county R&R CCRC provides vital programs that address the various needs of caretaking. These programs include:

  • Alternative payment programs- CCRC can help pay for child care for qualifying families. For inquiries, call their Victorville office 805-399-830-9582 or San Bernardino office at 805-399-9587.
  • Parent Cafes- A space to engage parents, foster relationship and build parent resilience and child development.
  • Bridge Program- Connects kinship or other caregivers to emergency child care that meets the needs of the child.
  • Events- Free family-focused in-person and virtual events like their free story times and play groups.

How does resource & referral support child care providers?

R&Rs understand that the backbone of quality child care is a supported and involved workforce. As such, they create programs and training opportunities to uplift child care providers.

  • Licensing- R&R’s can help those family, friend and neighbors who are providing care services retain their license and build a small business. Watch the Family Child Care Journeys video for a step-by-step illustration of how one can obtain their license.
  • Technical assistance and professional development- Child care providers have ample opportunities to grow their skills through the California Workforce Registry, a web-based data system built to organize and promote the employment, education accomplishments, and professional development of early educators across the state. R&Rs invite, teach, and moderate the trainings.
  • Trauma-informed care- As mentioned above, the bridge program connects emergency caregivers to child care. To best meet the needs of children in the program, CCRC provides trauma-informed training for providers. The training focuses on understanding how trauma affects development, identifying and responding to childhood trauma, strengthening families, and self-care.

How does QSSB intersect with local resource and referrals?

QSSB is a program built and operated by five San Bernardino County agencies with a shared vision to increase access to high quality care environments. CCRC is one of those agencies operating the following portions of QSSB: recruitment and enrollment for all early education environments except state preschools, technical assistance and training for providers, and parent education. By working hand in hand with an R&R and other institutions like Cal State San Bernardino, QSSB can ensure that the participating providers receive the information and opportunities they need to provide the best care possible.

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