#parent | #kids | The U.S. has a shortage of licensed child care providers. Can these apps help?

Cat Wise:
The care was also expensive, $350 a week, nearly half her salary at the time.

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, child care that costs families more than 7 percent of their income is considered unaffordable. Personal nannies and child care centers, where overhead costs are high, are often the least affordable options for families.

Ramirez and her husband wanted to find a different care arrangement for their 1.5-year-old daughter, Jovina. Last march, she learned about a new app called WeeCare that helps connect families with licensed and vetted home-based care providers in their area.

She now walks Jovina a short distance to a day care, where she’s paying about $500 less a month and drop-offs are a lot easier.

Tonetta Riley is one of some 600 child care providers in three states, California, Minnesota, and Illinois, who have partnered with WeeCare since its launch in 2017.

In addition to helping families and providers connect via the app, the company also offers services for day care owners, including licensing support, billing and tax assistance. WeeCare takes a percentage of the monthly tuition parents pay through the app, usually around 10 percent.

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