March 10, 2023
For Immediate Release:
IOSCO COUNTY, MICH. –– The Early Childhood Investment Corporation’s (ECIC) – Child Care Innovation Fund has awarded a Regional Child Care Planning Grant to Develop Iosco (DI) in the amount of $150,000. The grant enables DI to facilitate a newly formed four-county Regional Child Care Planning Coalition which includes Alcona, Arenac, Iosco and Ogemaw Counties. This announcement follows Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s statewide announcement earlier today.
“Develop Iosco believes that a diverse coalition of individuals will create a stronger solution to the child care dilemma in our four-county area,” stated Gloria Brooks, President of DI’s Board of Directors. “We are excited to have been selected to bring these grant dollars to the communities and develop solutions for working families”. This is the first time DI has successfully applied and received state grant dollars of this size of a grant award.
The Coalition includes parent and grandparent primary caregivers and child care provider representatives from across the County. Other coalition members also include NEMSCA, Bay-Arenac Intermediate School District, Hale Area Schools, Plainfield and Oscoda Townships, MIWorks! Region 7B offices from Iosco, Arenac, Ogemaw and Alcona, and Iosco County government.
The 18-month grant period will focus on better understanding the needs of families with children age 12 and younger and learn new ways to expand access to child care including 2nd and 3rdshift and weekend care availability. The Regional Child Care Planning project is supported by funding provided from the Michigan Department of Education within the Caring for MI Future initiative, utilizing American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding, from the Office of Child Care, Administration for Children and Families, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
Develop Iosco will facilitate the Coalition meetings and coordinate data collection leading to a roadmap for the implementation of the plan by June 30, 2024. Community meetings will be held to keep working families, employers and others informed of the project’s progress and to provide feedback on potential solutions.