Child Care Assistance Program - Frequently Asked Questions

How do I apply for assistance?
  • Complete the application, answering as many questions as you can.
  • Be sure to sign the application.
  • You will see ATTACH PROOF next to questions requiring verification. (See “What verifications do I need?” for further details).
  • After we receive your application, we will mail a verification checklist within 10 days. This list will include any outstanding verification that you must send in before we can process your application.
  • Turn in your application and verifications to a Neighborhood Family Service Center or mail them to 1641 Payne Ave., #200, Cleveland, OH 44114.

What verifications do I need?
  • Proof of income -- includes but is not limited to paystubs, tax records, award letters, child support orders, etc.
  • Proof of any child support paid.
  • Proof of citizenship or qualified alien status for children in need of care. If the county verifies that you have already provided proof of citizenship to qualify for Ohio Works First, you will not have to provide it a second time.
  • Proof of a qualifying activity for all caretakers in the household -- includes but is not limited to an official school schedule, a work schedule, self-sufficiency contract, etc.
  • Provide the name and address of an eligible child care provider for each child in need of care. See below for help choosing a provider.

How do I choose a child care provider?
  • Parents and caregivers may select any licensed program approved to offer publicly funded child care. These programs include centers, family child care homes, and in-home aids.
  • Use the Child Care Directory to look for programs that fit your child care needs.
  • Search by location, type of program, and by ages of children who need care. You can learn more about each program, any added accreditation or affiliation, and view licensing inspections and substantiated complaints.

How do I get help completing this application?
  • Visit a Neighborhood Family Service Center for help.
  • If English is not your primary language, we will provide an interpreter.
  • If you have a disability, are hearing- or visually-impaired, a representative at one of the Neighborhood Family Service Centers can help you complete your application.

What will I need to do after I submit my application?
  • If any information changes after you turn in your application, you must provide updates using the following forms:
  • Keep an eye out for mail from Cuyahoga County Job and Family Services. Any mail about your child care eligibility will include critical information and may require actions from you.
  • Send in any required information by the date it is due. Failure to do so may result in denial of your application.
  • If you have used publicly funded child care since submitting your application and your application is then denied, you may be responsible for payments to your child care provider.

When will my benefits begin?
  • Your eligibility will be determined within 30 days from the date the signed and dated application is received by Cuyahoga County.
  • If the application is approved and you are eligible for child care benefits, we may authorize payment for child care services from the date we received your application.

What if my child has a disability or I suspect my child may be developmentally delayed?
  • Your child care provider may qualify for added assistance if they must make special adaptations for your child. Your provider can contact Cuyahoga County Job and Family Services for more information.

How do I make a complaint about a provider?
  • If you suspect a child care provider is violating licensing rules, call the Child Care Policy Help Desk at 877-302-2347, option 4.


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Child Care Assistance Program

The Child Care Assistance Program can help you cover part of the cost of child care while you are working or in school. Eligible residents can choose from hundreds of licensed care programs to find the one that best meets their needs.

Related Information

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