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Finding Child Care

Child Care is one of the most important decisions a family will make.  It is most important that families select child care that meets the special physical, social, emotional, cognitive, behavioral, and creative needs of their children.  These lay an important foundation for school readiness and support academic achievement.

OC Local Child Care Database


Who can I call for referrals for child care around my work or home?

  • Children's Home Society of California
  • The Resource and Referral (R&R) Program, available Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., provides parents and guardians with information about child care options, provides referrals to resources available in your community, and gives referrals to licensed child care programs throughout the Greater Long Beach area, Orange County, Sutter County, Yolo County, and Yuba County areas. Our R&R Specialists can help you find licensed child care based on your family's needs. To learn more about other services available through the R&R Program, click here or fill out a child care referral request form and a Program Specialist will contact you directly to provide referrals. For your convenience, you may also search our online child care referral database for referrals that meet your family's unique needs.

  • What if my child has Special Needs?
    • Children come with many types of health and developmental needs. All early care and education centers are expected to make every effort to accommodate children with special needs. There are many resources available to support families in finding quality care and education programs, to support teachers and caregivers including a child with special needs, and to link children who have or may have a disability with intervention services. To learn more about resources available in Orange County please visit the Quality Start OC website.

  • Resource & Referral Hotlines: (714) 543-2273 / (949) 364-6605

What types of child care are there?

What do I look for in a quality child care center?

What if I need help paying for child care and development services?

  • Orange County Child Care Eligibility List for Alternative Payment Programs -- Managed by Children's Home Society of California, connects parents searching for help paying for child care, with the programs providing assistance.  Can also provide a list of additional programs providing subsidies for child care.   Parents must meet eligibility requirements.
  • Orange County Head Start-- A comprehensive child development program designed to meet the education, emotional, social, health, and nutritional needs for enrolled children and families.  Parents must meet eligibility requirements.