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Grant helps providers buy teaching aids

Millicent Burke Kaalund, Bronx,shows off supplies she purchased with grant money Erica Berger

Millicent Burke Kaalund, who runs Loving Care Family Group in the Bronx, shows off supplies she purchased with grant money the UFT helped her receive.

The UFT has won a $2.7 million state Quality Grant to fund educational supplies for family child care providers. Eligible members of the union’s Family Child Care Providers Chapter receive a $350 grant for the purchase of program materials from Kaplan, including books and educational toys, when they apply.

“Part of the union’s role is to make sure family child care providers are supported as educators,” said Anne Goldman, the UFT vice president for non-DOE members. “Child care providers are laying the foundation for later success in school.”

Family child care provider Millicent Burke Kaalund used her $350 to buy nursery rhyme books, art supplies and puzzles for her center in University Heights in the Bronx.

“The puzzles train the kids to think. It helps them to concentrate and to use their eyes and brain together,” she said. 

The grant is funded by the New York State Office of Children and Family Services and administered by the UFT. Eligible providers can apply by calling a hotline number, 1-212-598-9511, and UFT staff will walk them through the process. When the application is approved, the provider will receive a password to shop for supplies online.

Licensed, registered family child care providers, as well as informal child care providers, are eligible. Nearly 3,000 people qualify for the grant, which will be awarded through March.

The funding for educational supplies is a result of the UFT’s ongoing efforts to seek state grant funding for professional development, educational supplies and other purposes. A previous state grant awarded $250 for educational supplies to eligible providers, but UFT advocacy led to increased funding.

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