Starting a Child Care Program

Staying close to your own children and watching the development of others’ are among the many benefits of starting your own family child care business. YWCA Child Care Solutions can guide you through the process of starting your own licensed or license-exempt child care. Our free informational meetings are a great place to get started:

Contact our office at (815) 484-9442 ext. 205, to register.

Educational Training Sessions

Our Recruitment and Retention Specialist will come to your home to provide a free educational training session. After completing the session, you will receive a 1-hour certificate that is accepted by DCFS for training hours. The following sessions are now available:

  • Building Your Contracts and Policies – Learn the components of writing a contract and good business communication practices with clients. An example contact and provider handbook will be provided.
  • Benefits of Good Record Keeping – Learn the basic elements of record keeping, claiming food expenses, and deducting business expenses. This session will provide examples of items that may be deducted from taxes using the time/space percentage.
  • Boosting Your Marketing Techniques – Learn how to identify the features and benefits within your program and how to market to prospective clients. Also, learn ways to market to current clients at a low cost.

Resources for Starting Your Own Child Care Program

YWCA Child Care Solutions staff is available to provide in-depth information about starting your child care business. Contact our office  at (815) 484-9442 ext. 205 to request a Child Care Program Start-up packet.

Additional YWCA resources include:

Browse these downloads and partner sites for more information on starting your own child care business:

New License-Exempt Centers

 Have you recently opened a License Exempt Daycare Center with a Certification of Exemption from DCFS?  If so, the YWCA can assist you with the next steps:

  • Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP) requirements and payment options
  • Understanding health and safety training requirements
  • Completing the background check process for team members
  • Resources for providing quality care
  • Implementing health and safety standards in your childcare setting

Please contact our office by either calling Emily at 815.484.9448 ext. 222 or by emailing  [email protected] for more information.

If you have not received your Certification of Exemption from DCFS please contact them at 800-252-2873.

Licensing Information

The Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (IDCFS) is responsible for setting standards and licensing day care centers, homes, group homes and day care agencies in the state. Visit the IDCFS website to learn more.