More financial relief available for MT child care providers, Bozeman service plans Monday reopening

Gov. Bullock announced $10 million in child care funding for Montana on Wednesday
Posted at 10:48 AM, May 09, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-09 12:53:18-04

Some of the businesses hardest hit by COVID-19 are child care services.

This week we learned from the Governor’s Office that some much needed federal relief is on its way.

Child care advocates and providers have been waiting anxiously for weeks now.

On Wednesday, Governor Steve Bullock announced $10 million dollars funded through the CARES Act will become available.

“Until the Governor released the $10 million dollars on Wednesday, a lot of the providers have had absolutely no financial assistance into their business at this time,” said Tori Sproles, Provider Services Coordinator with Child Care Connections.

“A lot of childcare programs did apply for federal funding through SBA’s PPP loans; a lot of them were not granted funding,” she added.

Like many struggling businesses, hundreds of child care facilities in the area closed their doors during the pandemic.

Maren Griswold of Storybook Early Learning Center in Bozeman closed a week before the Governor’s stay at home directive as an extra precautionary measure.

She’s opening up Monday and has already applied for the additional federal relief.

“I did apply for that. That would help out immensely as far as bills. And even putting some away in case we have to close down in the future,” said Griswold.

Griswold expects there will be plenty of challenges to reopening; between all the extra cleaning, cutbacks on hours and a tighter budget, things won’t be completely back to normal for a while.

“Without having lessons for almost two months now, it’s gonna put us back a ways.”

But knowing some additional financial assistance is on its way makes things a little less stressful.

If you are a child care provider, you can learn about what resources are available and how to apply for the federal assistance by visiting Child Care Connection's website:

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