Affordable Child Care in Larimer County

Child Care Task Force Releases Recommendations
Addressing Affordable Child Care in Larimer County

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Jennifer Umland

Communications Coordinator

jumland@fcchamber.org

Fort Collins Area Chamber of Commerce

Engagement from business, community and early childhood leaders is key

 

The Talent 2.0 Child Care Task Force is now combining forces with Larimer County to address the lack of affordable childcare, which has been deemed a challenge employers face when attracting and retaining workers. This collaboration comes after the Task Force released seven recommendations and more in the report “Recommendations to Address the Need for Additional Affordable Child Care in Larimer County.”

Along with the lack of affordable childcare, the Talent 2.0 Regional Workforce Strategy (2017) also identified housing attainability and the cost of transportation as additional challenges employers face. The Talent 2.0 Child Care Task Force was formed in June 2018 to develop strategies that address the childcare issue, identify changes to the current system and address the issue of childcare gaps.

“This group of dedicated volunteers worked over a period of just six months to develop an extensive number of recommendations and strategies that can change the landscape of childcare in Larimer County,” stated Mary Atchison, a consultant at Yellow Wagon Leadership and facilitator of the Talent 2.0 Child Care Task Force. “These strategies, when implemented, will help businesses and families be more successful. They will also support the developmental needs of our children.”

Recommendations:

  1. Establish a Larimer County Child Care Work Group, including strategic stakeholders from across the community, to continue the work of the Talent 2.0 Child Care Task Force and to implement the recommended strategies.
  2. Recruit and retain a highly trained and qualified early care and education (ECE) workforce that is paid a competitive wage.
  3. Educate and engage employers around the impact of childcare on the workforce.
  4. Collect and analyze updated data about the impact of childcare on employment and families.
  5. Conduct a public education campaign incorporating the results of data collection.
  6. Broaden and develop new and diverse funding streams for all aspects of early care and education, including public, private and philanthropic resources.
  7. As part of a comprehensive childcare solution for children ages 0–5, continue to explore options to institute universal preschool across Larimer County utilizing existing providers and space to accommodate all 3- and 4-year-old students.

See the full report HERE

“This report was produced by a team of leaders within childcare, government, education, and the business industry. The childcare issue in Northern Colorado directly affects our economy and job growth,” said Eric Lea, Vice President / Branch Manager with Robert Half and serves on the Talent 2.0 Child Care Task Force. “We came away with some ideas that we need to continue to tackle (in order) to move the needle. I was honored to be a part of this working group and know if we bring the right people to the table we can show progress.”

Now that the report has been accepted by the Talent 2.0 Steering Committee, the Child Care Task Force will work with Larimer County noting the county’s Strategic Plan – Goal #2, Objective #3, aligns with the strategies of the Task Force and the dedicated resources it can provide to help move the effort forward.

 

 Talent 2.0 actively support employers in finding, attracting and retaining the talent they need by connecting regional employers with residents and residents with better economic opportunities. Visit www.nocotalent2.com

 

Talent 2.0 Partners

City of Fort Collins Economic Health Department

City of Loveland Economic Development Department

Fort Collins Area Chamber of Commerce

Larimer County Economic Development Department

Larimer County Workforce Center

Loveland Chamber of Commerce

Northern Colorado Economic Alliance

United Way of Larimer County

Northern Colorado Prospers (NCP) is a five-year strategic initiative of the Fort Collins Area Chamber of Commerce designed to address four specific challenges facing business in Northern Colorado. Fix North I-25; Align, attract and retain talent; Bold voice of business and Retain and expand existing business. www.NorthernColoradoProspers.com

 

Goal 2: Align, Attract and Retain Talent

The region needs a dynamic labor market that provides employers with the workforce they need both today and in the future. More than ever before, successful communities will be those whose employers can find talent and whose residents can find jobs that let them work to their full potential. The Chamber will implement strategies to ensure a competitive advantage for area employees through quality workers and for area workers through quality jobs.

The Fort Collins Area Chamber of Commerce is a local association of 1,250 businesses and organizations that care about the region’s future. The Chamber works to build our region’s future through business. The Chamber believes successful businesses make a strong local economy, which lets our community afford a great quality of life. To that end, the Chamber serves as a convener and cultivator of leaders and influencers, a catalyst for business growth and a champion for a balanced, resilient, thriving economy. For more information about the Chamber, call (970) 482-3746 or visit www.FortCollinsChamber.com.