CCR&R children

Supports for Working Families


Identifying, selecting, and using quality early care and education programs is one of the earliest and (without child care resource and referral agencies), least supported challenges faced by working parents/families. In two-parent families, two incomes are frequently necessary to make ends meet and, very often, single parents are employed, leaving parents to find a place for their children while they are at work. Child care decisions involve balancing families’ needs and desires regarding availability, affordability, and quality.

Today’s reality is that child care is a significant need and expense for many families. In fact:

  • In North Carolina alone, an estimated 66% of children under the age of six live in homes where all parents work, resulting in close to 500,000 children birth through five years old in need of some kind of child care arrangement.1
  • There are over 1 million school-age children 5 to 14-years-old in North Carolina, 66% of whom have all parents in the workforce.2
  • On average, young children with working mothers spend 36 hours a week in child care.3
  • North Carolina ranks as the 11th least affordable state in the country for preschool-age child care. The average cost of center care for a preschooler consumes 41% of the median income for a single-parent family and close to 12% for a two-parent family.4   

Parents consistently report that child care enables them to find and keep jobs. The challenge for working families is to navigate the maze of options to find quality, affordable child care so that they can succeed as parents and as workers, and so that their children have the experiences necessary for their optimal growth and development. This is where Child Care Resource and Referral (CCR&R) agencies can help.

CCR&R agencies have a 30+ year history of providing services for working families and developing innovative initiatives across North Carolina to address the needs of children and families. 


1 U.S. Census Bureau, 2015 American Community Survey.

2 U.S. Census Bureau, 2015 American Community Survey.

3  Laughlin, Lynda (2013), Who’s Minding the Kids? Child Care Arrangements: Spring 2011 

4 Child Care Aware of America (2016) Parents and the High Price of Child Care: 2016 Update. (CCAoA, Arlington, VA).