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Family child care providers offer alternative to CDC

April 16, 2013

Image by Margaret Gotheridge, USAG Schweinfurt Public Affairs

Community members who are looking for a child care alternative to the Child Development Center can utilize the services provided by a Family Child Care provider. The FCC providers are individuals who care for military family children in their government quarters.

SCHWEINFURT, Germany – Community members seeking a child care alternative to the Child Development Center can depend on the services provided by a Family Child Care provider.

Since January, Schweinfurt’s CDC has operated at maximum capacity with reduced staff. Shortages in staff, coupled with unexpected absences due to illness, have reduced the CDC workforce by 25 percent.

“FCC hourly care is a viable option and more often available,” said Michael Payne, the director of Child, Youth and School services who oversees the CDC. But parents are sometime reluctant to utilize the FCC options, Payne said.

Many of the FCC providers offer military families full day care, part day care and hourly care. Some even offer care for special events like military ball functions or a parent’s date night.

“Right now Schweinfurt has 10 FCC providers,” said Heidi Woodall, FCC Director for Schweinfurt. “They have all gone through rigorous trainings, background checks and inspections to be cleared to open their homes.”

Family Child Care is a program offered by the Army established to support specific child care needs for military families. FCC providers — individuals who provide child care in their government quarters — go through the same rigorous certification process and background check as CDC providers. The FCC provider, for example, undergoes rigorous training on topics like child abuse reporting, child development, communicable diseases, fire safety, guidance techniques, medication distribution and the business aspects of child care. Additionally, the provider’s home is inspected by the Army public health nurse, safety office and fire department before it can be opened stated Woodall.

Parents interested in using FCC providers should register their child at the Parent Central Services office located in The Commons, Bldg. 224, on Ledward Barracks. Parent Central Services will then be able to provide parents with a list of available FCC providers to contact for childcare.

“Parents should talk to the provider and get all the information they need and ask questions,” said Woodall. “This is necessary for parents to become comfortable with the provider who will be taking care of their child.”

Parent Central Services can also offer other child care options including a list of babysitters certified in CPR and First Aid. The office can provide information on childcare centers off-post, though those facilities are not endorsed by the Schweinfurt garrison.

For more information on the FCC program contact their office in The Child Development Center on Askren Manor, DSN 354-6551, CIV 09721-96-6551.

Story by Margaret Gotheridge, USAG Schweinfurt Public Affairs

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