IL Governor J.B. Pritzker has announced the launch of “I Got Love /¡Siento Amor!”, the statewide enrollment campaign for childcare and early education services, featuring Illinois artists, musicians, and production partners. Since March 2020, the state has provided $978 million in early childhood stability and recovery. This investment allowed providers to keep their doors open, but enrollment has decreased as an ongoing result of the pandemic. By the end of 2021, 97% of licensed provider recipients were open.
The campaign is investing $12.7 million to expand information about Illinois’ one-stop-shop for everything regarding early childhood, the Illinois Cares for Kids website. The site has a search engine for local programs, information on childcare subsidy programs and many other resources about the importance of early learning. Illinois Cares for Kids is a place parents, grandparents, caretakers, teachers and childcare providers can access everything related to early childhood in Illinois.
“We’re making Illinois the best state in the nation to raise a child – and it’s essential to ensure families have access to affordable early childhood education and care to build a strong foundation for a lifetime of learning,” said Governor Pritzker.“Illinois Cares for Kids helps Illinois families choose from hundreds of local providers to find the right match for their children.”
The ‘I Got Love / ¡Siento Amor! campaign is available in English and Spanish and features an Illinois-based local artistic collaboration spreading the message that Illinois is full of people who care. The campaign will target families in need of childcare and early learning supports to highlight the importance of early learning programs and how the state can support families looking to enroll in one.
“We want to increase awareness among families that early childhood education programs are consistently open, safe, and serving children. We want Illinois families to feel empowered to quickly and efficiently locate early childhood education educators and resources,” said Dr. Jamilah R. Jor’dan, Executive Director, Governor’s Office of Early Childhood Development.
“Families need to know the resources and options available to them when it comes to early learning and childcare,” said Secretary Grace Hou, Illinois Department of Human Services. “This outreach campaign will give parents and caregivers struggling with the many stressors of raising a family resources to find safe providers they trust and can partner with to help children get ahead.”
“It’s important that families feel comfortable with the people taking care of their children,” said State Superintendent of Education Dr. Carmen I. Ayala. “Illinois Cares for Kids shows families the quality of care they can receive and gives parents and caretakers the tools to make informed decisions about childcare and early learning.”
The campaign also includes a statewide text messaging platform, Ready for K, that offers fun facts and tips on children’s learning and development that is available in several languages.
More information on programs is available by clicking here.