Thank you for your service as a childcare provider during the COVID-19 state of emergency. We are grateful for you!
The state of Michigan has developed numerous resources to help keep you informed about COVID-19 and the state’s response. We encourage you to visit our COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions Resource site to explore childcare frequently asked questions and answers.
Yes. The Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs has created Guidelines for Safe Child Care Operations During COVID-19.
This document provides tools to help providers make the best decisions possible to limit the spread of COVID-19 and to create safe spaces for children and staff members. We will continue to update the document based on our best knowledge and partner with the field to learn about how we fight this virus while providing quality child care.
Families should ask their child care providers what they’re doing to respond to COVID-19. All providers have a COVID-19 Preparedness and Response Plan. Families can request to see these plans at any time.
Workers that need help finding childcare should visit Help Me Grow or call 211 to complete the brief form explaining what they need.
Once the form is submitted, someone from your community will contact you within 48 hours to connect you with childcare providers that are open and have space to serve your children. This is a connection service. There will be a charge for childcare.
The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services has created a Child Care Provider Toolkit with a variety of social emotional resources to support adults caring for young children in the child care environment:
Michigan’s Social Emotional Consultants are also available to speak with you twice a week! Join them for free on Zoom every Tuesday and Friday from 12:30-1:30 pm.
Yes. The state of Michigan and the CDC have several communication tools to help.
Additional signage from the CDC (including translates into multiple languages
Yes. The Child Care Relief Fund is a grant program that helps child care providers cover costs during the COVID-19 state of emergency. The goal of the program is to help you stay in business and make child care more affordable for Michigan families. These grants are non-competitive and funds do not need to be repaid.
Providers can apply by visiting www.michigan.gov/childcare on your computer or mobile device. The application takes less than 10 minutes to complete! See our website for more information on how to apply. HINT: Using the resources at the website will help ensure your application is complete and accurate, which will help avoid processing delays.
All childcare providers play a critical role in providing safe places for children to grow and learn while supporting families in the community. We recognize the significant financial impact many providers have experienced during this state of emergency and are working to support you through:
The fastest and preferred method is to file for unemployment insurance benefits online using the Michigan Web Account Manager (MiWAM) at Michigan.gov/UIA.
MiWAM is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You must first sign in to MILogin to access or create a MiWAM account. For step by step instructions, view the MiWAM Toolkit for Claimants. You may also file by phone at 1-866-500-0017. If you are hearing impaired, TTY service is available at 1-866-366-0004.
For more information about how to file for unemployment benefits, visit Michigan.gov/UIA.
We encourage you to visit the Michigan.gov/UIA for more information.
If you still have questions, you can contact the call center at 1-866-500-0017. Please use the following schedule to make calls:
We are aware that phone calls to the Unemployment Insurance Agency may be resulting in busy signals for callers and that the online system may be responding slowly. We encourage you to continue with your attempts to file a claim on the designated day of your last name and to go online on off-peak hours, from 8 p.m. to 8 a.m.
If you are having difficulty locating food items, start by substituting items on your menu for healthy alternatives. For example:
In addition, family/group home providers can get healthy meals and snacks free of charge by visiting a Meet Up and Eat Up site in their community. All school districts and some community-based organizations are offering drive through meal pick up now through summer 2020.
You can find a site near you by visiting your local school district’s website, texting ‘food’ to 877-877, or visiting mcgi.state.mi.us/schoolnutrition. Once you’ve located a site, visit the food distribution site during their operating hours, report how many children you serve, and they will provide meals. No additional documentation is necessary. Food is suitable for children who eat solid food. Formula and food for infants is generally not available.
Reminder: If you are a CACFP provider, you may not charge CACFP for meals you did not purchase.
All children under 18 years of age, regardless of income, are eligible to pick up meals provided by their local school district. The Michigan Department of Education maintains a map of open sites. The map includes addresses for available sites and when they are open for food service.
Families can also apply for food assistance (including SNAP and WIC) on MiBridges.
Guidance from the Michigan Department of Education explains that meals served are required to have all required components that meet the meal pattern requirements. Nutrition is key to maintaining health and wellness, especially during a public health crisis. Can you substitute another item from the same group? For instance, if you cannot find whole wheat bread, substitute a tortilla, a wrap, crackers, rice or pasta. Fresh, frozen, and canned foods can also be used. If you cannot obtain a required component, meals served without a required component must be approved by the CACFP. Please contact Melissa Lonsberry.
The Michigan Department of Education has issued guidance about feeding children in child nutrition programs during the state of emergency.
Families and providers can find the latest information about the Child Development and Care Program, commonly called the child care subsidy, at Michigan.gov/Childcare.
Yes. Families can still apply for the Child Development and Care program (commonly called the Childcare Subsidy) at newmibridges.michigan.gov.