Each Indiana community is unique in its needs and opportunities. Child Care Answers is here to support you as a resident, leader, employee, or supporter of child care in Hamilton, Hendricks, or Marion Counties with community resources for child care.
One common thread runs throughout all of Indiana – affordable, high-quality early care and education is essential. Investments in early childhood education create sustainable, thriving communities. By bringing leaders, organizations, and businesses to the table, we can create scalable, sustainable solutions that benefit families and children for years to come, no matter where you live in Indiana. Covered in this guide:
The key to a thriving community is high-quality, affordable early care and education. Get facts about early care and education in Indiana as well as detailed data and action steps for Hamilton, Hendricks, and Marion Counties.
The first five years of a child’s life are foundational in their development. Investments in early care and education result in fewer investments later in the areas of K-12 remediation, health care, criminal justice costs, and more. Accessible and affordable high-quality early care and education creates a two-generational economic impact, allowing parents to participate in the workforce and provide for their families while engaging and educating the next generation workforce.
In the first five years of life, children’s brains grow faster than they ever will again. These early experiences shape brain development and set a foundation for a lifetime of learning.
Early childhood care and education not only affects future academic success. It affects community health, criminal activity, family incomes, and corporate bottom lines too. We have a lot of work to do in central Indiana - but, together, we can make the essential accessible to all.
These case studies feature several child care efforts in local communities across the state of Indiana. Varying in size and location, they offer real-world examples of how communities can come together in support of high-quality child care. Get inspired to take action in your own community!
Looking to take that next step? Connect with us in English or Spanish for guidance on how to get active in your community. Or, read ideas on our Get Involved page.
Providing Affordable Child Care, No Matter What
Hendricks County organization serves families experiencing homelessness
Our team of specialists are in your corner, every step of the way. If you need help understanding your community’s child care needs, creating community resources for families, or advocating for child care in your community, call on one of these caring experts. Fill out our Community Information Form in English or Spanish or call 317.636.5727 to get connected.
Malik , Rasheed. “Examining the Powerful Impact of Investments in Early Childhood for Children, Families, and Our Nation’s Economy.” Center for American Progress, September 6, 2022. https://www.americanprogress.org/article/examining-the-powerful-impact-of-investments-in-early-childhood-for-children-families-and-our-nations-economy/.
“Data Center”, Brighter Futures Indiana, Accessed August 21, 2023. brighterfuturesindiana.org/data-center.
“U.S. Census Bureau Quickfacts: Hamilton County, IN.” Median Gross Rent, 2017-2021. Accessed March 22, 2023. https://www.census.gov/quickfacts/fact/table/US/PST045221.
“Average Annual (Mean) Expenditures and Shares for the U.S. and Regions, 2020–21.” Consumer expenditures for the U.S., regions, and selected metropolitan areas. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Accessed March 23, 2023. https://www.bls.gov/regions/midwest/data/consumerexpenditures_selectedareas_table.htm.
Filter by TopicFilter by RoleFilter by Resource Type
August is Library Card Sign-Up month! At Child Care Answers, we have wonderful partnerships with our local libraries, but our love for the library started with our families. So, to celebrate, we asked our staff about their favorite library memories! Grace Sededji, Child Care Resource & Referral Specialist One of my favorite memories is from […]
At Child Care Answers, we want to honor everything that makes you, well, you! As the leader of Child Care Answers, I’ve seen first-hand how important it is to instill a welcoming culture of diversity, equity, and inclusion. This not only applies to our board and staff, but we work to ensure that it radiates […]
Looking for something to do as your summer comes to an end? We asked Child Care Answers staff to share what they like to do with their families! Give one of our favorite summer memories a try! Jessica, Community Engagement Specialist As a child, my family’s favorite thing to do during the summer was grill […]
Data/assessment specialist Patti Bowes usually tells stories through data, but today is her chance to tell us her story in her own words. Learn more about Patti below! Talk about a fellow educator you admired and what you learned most from them. One educator that stands out to me was my college chemistry teacher. It […]
As CCA’s first contact for families and child care professionals, CCR&R specialist Grace Sededji‘s name might be familiar to many of you. But, did you know that she was a toddler teacher and is a mom? Learn more below! What was your favorite activity to do with your kids in the classroom? When I worked […]
If you are a child care professional, you definitely know how hard it can be to maintain composure both inside and outside of the classroom. To help you find your calm, we hope you’ve heard about SPARK Learning Lab’s partnership with the Calm App. By filling out a short form, you can get access to […]
Office manager and HR generalist Lane Heaney keeps CCA humming as an organization, but did you know that her roots run deep in caring for children as well? Read below to learn more! What was your favorite activity to do with your kids in the classroom? I have always been an advocate of early literacy […]
The Office of Early Childhood and Out-of-School Learning (OECOSL) is a critical partner for Child Care Answers’ work. We’re thrilled this month to welcome Beth Steward, child care quality specialist at OECOSL. Read below to learn more about her experience and how the State is shaping child care. What is your early childhood education background? […]
Community Help Guide Each Indiana community is unique in its needs and opportunities. Child Care Answers is here to support you as a resident, leader, employee, or supporter of child care in Hamilton, Hendricks, or Marion Counties with community resources for child care. One common thread runs throughout all of Indiana – affordable, high-quality early […]
CCA’s newest staff member, community engagement specialist Jessica Carman, joined us in the fall. We’re thrilled to have her on the team and to be able to share a little bit more about her below! What was your favorite activity to do with your preschool students when you were in the classroom? My favorite activity […]
Family engagment specialist Jamie Le Sesne Spears offers a diverse set of experiences as a mom of a toddler and former preschool teacher. Read below to learn more about her! What was your favorite activity to do with your kids in the classroom? Any activity that involved the creative process! My sweet spot was mixing […]
The family is a child’s introduction to the world. A child’s identity is grounded by their culture and heritage. For families, there is pride and honor in sharing your culture with your child. As they step out of the home and into new environments, like child care, holding onto a family’s culture can become complicated. […]
Just as family and community engagement manager Tom Taylor‘s work at CCA covers a diverse group of audiences and experiences, his other “job” as dad also has a lot of variety. As dad to a newborn, an eight-year-old, and a teenager, he’s got all his bases covered! What did you like most about your kids’ […]
Oftentimes, we have high hopes for the holidays. We want to go to all places and do all the things. Just imagine it now – Mariah Carey setting the tone as you are sipping cocoa by the fire, and your little ones are quietly crafting at the table. It will be cozy, magical, and perfect, […]
While knowledge manager Kristin Kahl has spent more time behind a computer screen than in a classroom, she has learned so much from her vocation as a mom and from her time at Child Care Answers. Learn more about her below! What did you like most about your kids’ child care experiences? I actually loved […]
Your guide to early childhood mental health resources in Hamilton County, Indiana Here at Child Care Answers, in partnership with A Healthier Hamilton County: Systems of Care, we work to ensure all families and child care professionals in central Indiana have the necessary resources to access and navigate behavioral and mental health services. Included in […]
Family support specialist Lauren George brings a wealth of knowledge to her role as a former infant teacher, Certified Lactation Consultant, and mom of two young children. Learn more about her experiences below! What was your favorite activity to do with your kids in the classroom? Every Friday we had cleaning parties. Each child would […]
As a former preschool teacher and current aunt to school-agers, program engagement specialist Michelle Terry has a lot of stories up her sleeve. Read more to get to know her a bit better. What was your favorite activity to do with your kids when you were in the classroom? During circle time, I enjoyed teaching […]
I have always found a purpose in art. The creative process provides me with time to think and space to express my feelings; but it wasn’t always that way! Being a bit of a perfectionist, it was hard to let go of the “cookie-cutter” crafts. I wanted so badly to be good at art that […]
Bilingual provider engagement specialist, Lucy Intriago, is next up in our revamped Last Day Q&A series. Read below to learn about her experiences as both an early childhood professional and a mom of two! What was your favorite activity to do with your kids in the classroom? My favorite activity was to do choreography to […]
We’re switching up our Last Day Q&A feature to focus on why you’re here – early childhood education and parenting. First up is our executive director, Mollie Smith, who so gracefully continues to move us forward in our mission. What was your favorite activity to do with your kids in the classroom? My favorite activity […]
“Are we there yet?” is the phrase I hear over and over in the car – even for a quick five minute drive. So, call me surprised when I hardly heard this during our 11 hour drive to and from the beach for spring break. My kids are four and eight, and this is only […]
Our newest team member, child care resource and referral specialist Grace Sededji, has been a wonderful addition to the team in her support of families and child care programs. Learn more about her below! What three traits define you? Simple, caring, persistent What is your personal philosophy? Keep life simple, and take it one day […]
“I’m boorrrred!” Is that a common refrain in your household? As much as I know how important outdoor play is for young children, let’s be real. Sometimes you just have to give up the fight, especially when you have kids like mine that melt in the sun and arrive back home from an outdoor play […]
In addition to being an expert on all things CCA, data & assessment specialist Patti Bowes brings expertise of raising two daughters and maintaining a sense of humor throughout her life as a working mom. Get to know her better below! What three traits define you? Resourceful, Easygoing, Funny What is your personal philosophy? What […]
Lane Heaney is the glue that holds CCA together, through her work in HR, payroll, budgeting, and anything needed to keep us running smoothly as a team. Learn more about Lane below! What three traits define you? Trustworthy, loyal, fair What is your personal philosophy? Don’t ask others to do anything you wouldn’t do yourself. […]
Our male role models in our lives play a special role and offer unique perspectives. For young children, this often starts at home with dads, uncles, and grandfathers! Child Care Answers wanted to learn more about this perspective and had the privilege to interview four dads in our community about their experiences in fatherhood. Share […]
This month, we celebrate Jamie’s one-year work anniversary with CCA. She has brought so much to the team and has been able to help so many families in her work as our family engagement specialist. What three traits define you? Loyal, caring, thoughtful What is your personal philosophy? Grace on grace. What’s one thing you […]
As family and community engagement manager, “our guy” Tom Taylor gracefully leads our staff who connect with parents, businesses, and community organizations in central Indiana. He also wears many hats as all-around tech guru and master of a good spreadsheet. Learn more about Tom in our latest Last Day Q&A! What three traits define you? […]