Let’s hear it for the caregivers. Particularly, childcare.
As the economy across the country and here in the Iowa Lakes Corridor region continues to bubble and boil, one limiting factor to growth is the availability of childcare. We’re not saying anything here that the parents of two toddlers don’t already know, but it can be hard to find a place to leave little Timmy and Susie when you’re headed off to work.
That’s why it was so good to learn that Storm Lake United would host a series of childcare dialogues with community leaders, including one today. These conversations will help define the scope of the problem, identify impediments to childcare availability, and envision solutions.
Our region is blessed with several great childcare facilities, both for- and nonprofit, and many already have an impulse for growth. The Corridor has in the last few months talked with at least three current and one prospective provider interested in adding slots for more kids.
As a region, we can help by lobbying policymakers for regulations that are limited and practical. Employers should also explore flexible scheduling systems that align whenever possible with daycare hours. Finally, when the costs of operation for daycare providers become too great for the market, it’s time to talk about creative financing solutions.
The team at the Corridor will continue to assist current and prospective providers with everything from business planning to site selection. Children are our greatest resource, and the loving women and men who care for them deserve any assistance we can offer.