Colorado Child Care Assistance Program (CCCAP)


Keisha and Sarah's Story

Up until recently, Keisha supported her wife Sarah and their young daughter through her job as a cashier at a local grocery store. Then the store laid people off. Keisha lost her job, but didn't qualify for unemployment benefits. Keisha and Sarah have very little money in savings, and aren't sure how they can keep paying for rent, food, and utilities.

They apply for Colorado Works online through Colorado PEAK. Then they meet with Maria, an eligibility worker, who also helps them apply for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and Health First Colorado (Medicaid). Several weeks later, Keisha and Sarah get a letter saying they are approved for Colorado Works. Next, Keisha and Sarah meet with their case manager, Carol, to come up with a plan to get them jobs.

Keisha thinks she can work from home doing customer service over the phone, and agrees to take a customer service training program and then search for a job. Sarah needs just a few more classes to complete her training as an x-ray technician, but she put those plans on hold when they had their child. Carol suggests Sarah can finish her training and then look for a job.

“I’d love to go back to school,” Sarah says, “but what about our little girl? We can’t afford to pay someone to watch her.”

“I'll give you a referral to the Colorado Child Care Assistance Program (CCCAP)," Carol tells them. "Because you're on Colorado Works now, you'll skip the waiting list, if they have one, and get subsidized child care more quickly."

“Great!” said Sarah. ”How does that work?"

"Once I process the referral, CCCAP will contact you and let you know how many hours you qualify for, and how much you have to pay each month," Carol explains. "Since neither of you is working right now and you're getting Colorado Works, you probably won't have to pay anything, or just a small fee. CCCAP will explain the details."

After their meeting Carol sends the referral to CCCAP. About a week later, Keisha and Sarah get an email saying they're approved for CCCAP services, telling them how many hours are included, and what the rate will be per hour. Since they currently have no income, Keisha and Sarah do not have to pay a monthly parent fee.

Keisha and Sarah go online to Colorado Shines, and find a child care center near them with a good rating. They call the center, but it doesn't have any openings for new CCCAP students. So they look online again and find a preschool just a bit farther away that also accepts CCCAP and has a good rating. They call that place, and it has an opening.

Keisha and Sarah visit the preschool and decide it's a good fit. They do the paperwork needed to get it approved as their CCCAP child care provider.

Soon, their daughter is meeting new friends at preschool, and Sarah is able to start the classes she needs to finish her x-ray technician training.

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