(WANE) – The Northeast Indiana Early Childhood Coalition has created a PSA for a parent survey to help have a better understanding of the childcare needs in Northeast Indiana.

The coalition have been surveying different people since the end of August in addition to childcare focus groups, surveying employers. This will continue through October.

In the northeast region, there are around 40,000 children under the age of six that may need care. The capacity for care is 15,000.

“No matter where you are it is an infant and toddler desert,” said Allie Sutherland, coordinator Northeast Regional Childcare Coalition.

A snapshot from brighterfuturesindiana.org on the NE region number of children in demand for care.

Ratios for childcare providers are low, the coalition wants lower ratios for quality of care however, that leaves fewer spaces. Right now, many providers are charging less than what it costs to operate their programs, so they are required to do fundraisers on top of charge tuition.

Expense is another factor to childcare issues, on average families with two children are paying anywhere from $12,000 to $15,000 a year for childcare.

“That’s before you’ve fed anybody, clothed, housed, transportation,” Sutherland said.

Questions on the survey include:

  • We are gathering household information (working parents, number of children)
  • Employment information (full or part-time, industry)
  • Barriers to child care

You can find a Q-R code that will take you directly to the survey in the video linked here.