May 5, 2021
WASHINGTON, D.C. – On May 7, the National Association for Family Child Care (NAFCC) will celebrate Provider Appreciation Day – an annual celebration that recognizes the work of child care providers, teachers and care givers of young children.
“Family child care providers play an important role in educating and shaping the lives of young children,” said Lanette Dumas, executive director of the National Association for Family Child Care. “As educators, they cultivate a warm and loving environment in their home to prepare children for school and lifelong success, often without receiving recognition for the work they do. At NAFCC, we are grateful for all of the family child care providers who make learning happen and serve their communities by providing high-quality care.”
Provider Appreciation Day was established in 1995 by NAFCC president Sue Williamson along with Monday Morning Inc. staff as a way to thank family child care and center-based providers. The holiday is celebrated each year on the Friday before Mother’s Day throughout the United States and around the world as a “thank you” to the people who educate, support and spend a tireless amount of time with our children.
Family child care is early education in a home-based setting. The majority of family child care providers are women operating a small business, offering an environment that’s culturally conducive for families. Throughout the pandemic, most of these educators have remained open for working parents that need child care. Unfortunately, providers have been hit hard on a personal and economic front due to COVID-19, putting themselves and their own families at risk to stay in business.
“Throughout the pandemic, family child care providers have kept their doors open – sometimes with little support – in order to survive,” said Dumas. “These women are not only an essential workforce, but essential to keeping our country running. Our focus must also be on ensuring child care jobs are good jobs and providers are able to stay in this profession and do what they do best.”
“This is why Provider Appreciation Day is so important,” Dumas added. “Increasing awareness about child care providers ensures their contributions aren’t erased.”
Children, families and community leaders are encouraged to use the hashtag #ProviderAppreciationDay on social media and send a card, video or small gift to their family child care provider. For ideas on how to celebrate, including a toolkit with a local proclamation and social media graphics, visit nafcc.org/news-events/provider-appreciation-day/.