Developed by early leaders, the Objectives and Purpose in our by-laws have driven our history. They are as shown below:
To Promote the Development of High Quality Educational Programs and Operational Procedures.
Promoting the development of high quality educational programs and operational procedures will enable the family child care provider to more effectively furnish a safe, nurturing and creative environment for the children they serve.We recognized the need for training specifically designed to reflect the sensitivity of our industry, in order to preserve the unique quality of family child care. As a result, leadership tracts and appropriate practice for mixed-age child development workshops have been created and presented by our members.
In 1994, 6 members attended the Train-the-Trainer course for Second Helping Advanced Curriculum (32 hours) for Family Child Care created by Windflower Enterprises, (currently owned by Pathfinders, Inc.). We promote this education and training for family child care providers and created more “Second Helping” instructors. These instructors produced more graduates and increased the number of intentional, professional family child care providers. Funding from grants and initiatives has been offered to us in order that we might assist with the retention and recruitment of providers.
In June 2000, we offered our first scholarships for family child care credentials, including accreditation. In 2001, we started the MENTOR program.
We have hosted a statewide conference every year, with many diverse family child care-oriented tracts offered, provided ongoing leadership training for our members. We continue to offer this and other high level training at annual conferences, Leaderships Summit, and quarterly trainings.
We hosted 3 NAFCC (national) conferences in our state in 1998, 2006 (also international) and 2014.
To Foster the Development of Local Association Chapters.
We strongly uphold the concept that our association belongs to its members and strive to inform and involve providers from every part of the state. The more leaders we have, the more knowledge we gain and share. Our actions are based on decisions voted on at our meetings.Originally, the 67 counties of our state were divided into 5 regions and were represented by 10 Regional Representatives. Within one year, the state was divided into 7 regions with 21 Regional Representatives, and a Regional Representative Coordinator position was created as part of the Executive Board.
We were granted IRS 501(c)(3) nonprofit status in 1994, and in 1996 we were able to offer group exemption to local associations. This encouraged the growth of local associations (currently called Chapters) with 100 % membership in FFCCHA.
In 2001, Regional Reps were named Area Reps and aligned with the Resource and Referral agencies areas. Later, they were realigned to coincide with School Readiness Coalitions. Today, Area Reps are aligned with the 30 Early Learning Coalition boundaries, thus 30 FFCCHA Area Reps. Our efforts have created a strong working relationship with our state and local organizations.
To Encourage and Support the Education of Parents, Businesses, Corporations and the Communities of Florida, Concerning Quality Home Child Care.
There was a need for providers, child care agencies, and community leaders to foster an enhanced awareness of the true facts about family child care. So, in 1997, FFCCHA launched a Parent Awareness Campaign aimed at educating providers on how to educate parents regarding issues of quality child care.More than 10,000 brochures and materials were distributed to providers, parents, and businesses at regional meetings held around the state. While our primary intention was to educate the provider in self-marketing, we have also promoted the ‘intentional’ provider and the industry of family child care as a viable career choice in the early care field.
In 2001, we placed “Family Child Care is Family Friendly Care” full page color ads in Child Care Directories (now called Early Care Guides) around the state. In 2003, we launched “There’s No Place Like Home! public awareness campaign with new brochures, booklets, and video about Quality Family Child Care. The brochures and ad were updated again and translated into Spanish in 2008.
To participate with policy-making agencies (city, state and federal) to work for changes, modifications and implementation of standards necessary to provide high quality child care for all children.
FFCCHA was instrumental in the development, wording, and/or passing of the following laws:
- 1995 – Legislation passed protecting FCC homes from being charged Commercial Utility rates.
- 1996 – Legislation was passed re-defining the definition of Family Child Care. The ratio changes, allowing the possibility of a 6th child. Non-sibling school-agers are now allowed and the total number increased to 10. Effective 1/97
- 1997 – Legislation was passed protecting family child care homeowner’s insurance. It states that homeowner insurance companies can NOT cancel a licensed family child care provider that carries separate business liability insurance.
- 1999 – Legislation was passed to create Large Family Child Care Homes, licensed for 2 caregivers for up to 12 children in a home. In 2009, there are 386 large FCC homes.
- 2004 – Special legislative session called in December for VUPK, FCC homes included. The first VPK class was offered in the fall of 2005. In 2009, 145 FCC homes offer VPK.
- 1993 – established and incorporated as a professional trade organization promoting professionalism among all family child care (FCC) providers in Florida
- 1994 – issued group nonprofit status 501(C)(3) and group sales tax exemption
- 2008 – granted affiliate membership by our national organization – National Association for Family Child Care (NAFCC)
- 2016 – expanded to 700 members and 25 local chapters
- Over 4,000 registered and licensed Family Child Care Homes; 145 of these homes offer the Voluntary Pre-Kindergarten (VPK) program.
- Over 40,000 of our youngest, most impressionable children are being cared for and educated in regulated family child care homes.
- We have 166 nationally accredited family child care homes – 2nd in the nation