Child care training expanding in Allen County

May 23—LIMA — Local entities are hoping to increase the options for childcare in the region. Allen County Job and Family Services hosted a training for community members who hope to become in-home child care providers. The three day event began Tuesday afternoon at Ohio Means Jobs.

"This is an investment in our community," said Ohio Means Jobs Administrator Jessie Doyle. "Within 10 miles of Lima, we have about 2,500 job openings. We really need some childcare providers here in Allen County. The goal is to help parents get back into the workforce and be able to provide a safe, caring place for their children to go so that they can go to work. Our numbers are a lot lower than what they used to be about eight years ago. We're just we really seeing a need for new providers."

Doyle said the state of Ohio provided funding and Allen County Job and Family Services has partnered with the YWCA to create the training workshop. A process that normally takes months according to Doyle will only take participants four to eight weeks to become licensed childcare providers.

"We are focused on Type B (childcare)," said Doyle. "That is an in-home provider that can have one to six children. The Type A can have another employee and up to 12 children in there home."

On Tuesday, ten community members said yes to training and becoming a childcare provider. The class provided various tools from CPR training to training on dealing with child abuse.

"It's just very hands-on interactive; we're here to support them and give them the resources that they need," said Childcare Program Supervisor Kelly Pratt. "In order to become an in-home childcare provider where they can earn up to $30 an hour [or] self employed, they can set their hours and there's a huge need here in Allen County. The state of Ohio has come up with this initiative to get as many people licensed as we can."

The current class is closed to other participants who hope to become licensed. Doyle said the organization hopes to have another training session in June for those interested.

For more information, Kelly Pratt can be reached at 419-999-0291.

Reach Precious Grundy at 567-242-0351.