Kid Kare Amazon Smile


July Reimbursements Received

Funds arrived and are being sent out today! August 26, 2020

FREE or Low Cost Child Care for Essential Workers in April

Governor JB Pritzger announced updates on child care at his daily press briefing on April 5, 2020. As of April 1, essential workers will be eligible for free or low cost child care through the Illinois Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP). In addition, he announced a 30% rate increase to help cover the cost of care during the emergency. Watch the webinar on April 6 at 10 am for details!


Child Care Business Resources for Child Care During COVID-19 from IDHS and Governor’s Office of Early Child Care Development (GOECD) 

CCAP Application to Cover Child Care for Essential Workers: 

Governor’s April 5 Press Conference on Child Care

Stipends for Child Care During COVID-19 Emergency Order

 The Illinois Dept. of Human Services (IDHS) and Child Care Resource & Referral (CCR&R) System announced on 3/30/2020 that they are offering a stipend to child care homes (who were licensed prior to the emergency order) and centers registered to care for children of essential workers. Child care programs must submit an 1) Emergency Operations Form/(be registered on the Early Learning Helpline), 2) a Stipend Application, and 3) a W-9 for Emergency Child Care to be considered for the stipend. To receive these funds, you must care for the same group of children with the same staff each day, with no combining of groups. For more information, visit:

Have You Applied for a Child Care Restoration Grant Yet?

 Illinois has set aside $270 million dollars to help child care providers as the economy reopens from the state's Coronavirus Urgent Remediation Emergency (CURE) Fund. Applications for Child Care Restoration Grants will be available through August 14, 2020. 

For more information, visit:

Login to the IL Gateways Registry to apply at:

Steps to Apply:


CACFP Support Needed in Economic Stimulus Plan

KidKare by Minute Menu joins the National CACFP Sponsors Association in calling upon Congress to include CACFP support in the Economic Stimulus plan. Child care is an essential service for working families and their children, and emergency federal funding is desperately needed. 

You can use the form provided by the National CACFP Sponsors Association to quickly and easily contact your representatives and voice your support for emergency federal funding for the CACFP Simply click the link below, provide your zip code, and complete and submit the form. Your message will be sent to your representatives automatically.

Re-Opening Child Care in Phase 3

Here's the new guidelines for re-opening child care in phase 3. Work with your DCFS/IDHS agency when your part of the state goes into Phase 3. (See link below.) Day Care Resources has been in contact with the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) who is working with the Governor's office to determine the details of reopening child care. We are awaiting a response to capacity and the reopening plan submission process through DCFS.

We do NOT anticipate any disruptions in funding for the Food Program (CACFP). 


CDC Guidelines for COVID Prevention in Child Care


IDHS Coronavirus Information


Covid-19 (Coronavirus) Update

CACFP Update on the Covid-19 National Emergency Declaration

On 3/20/2020 The State of Illinois through multiple agencies issued mandatory closure of all Day Care Homes and Day Care Centers.  Centers must apply for and be issued an Emergency Child Care License.  Day Care Homes may only operate as license exempt sites for up to 6 children.  

For up to the minute updates go to the Governor's Office of Early Childhood Education

On 3/18/2020 The US Government passed and signed into law
H.R.6201 - Families First Coronavirus Response Act

What does this mean for a CACFP Child Care Center and a Home Day Care?

A quick summary of the law is that the Government has empowered the Secretary of Agriculture the authority to waive CACFP Requirements ranging from authorizing non-congregate feeding (kids pickup food) to the waiver of meal pattern component requirements.  Some laws pertaining to schools were waived without application or in a manner that fast tracked those to create non-congregate feeding sites to ensure the greatest access in the shortest amount of time.

The next step for the Illinois State Board of Education is to apply for waivers through the Secretary of Agriculture. 

On 3/20/20 at 10:30 am, Day Care Resources and other Sponsors will find out the current status and results of those applications and the Illinois State Board of Education’s decisions on what will and will not be allowed by waiver.  Additionally we will find out what, if any, specific steps would be required to satisfy any waiver.

For example, the ISBE supplied this language in the most recent information to Sponsors.


CACFP: 7 CFR Part 226.20

  (e) Unavailability of fluid milk—(1) Temporary. When emergency conditions prevent an institution or facility normally having a supply of milk from temporarily obtaining milk deliveries, the State agency may approve the service of breakfast, lunches, or suppers without milk during the emergency period.


Everyone is encouraged to do the best they can and document any issues and label them Covid-19 related so that waivers can be applied when a list of exceptions are available.  Our systems can only process complete meals and snacks so if a item is missing please record what you intended to serve and then document why it was missing (ex. No milk available at store).

When we have all of the necessary information we will get all the detailed information to all of our clients.

We appreciate everyone’s patience and understanding as we work to obtain the information you need to document or operate in the CACFP during this National Emergency.  

Kids Can't Come Due to COVID?

Offer Grab and Go Meals & Snacks!

 until April 30, 2021!

En Español

Many day cares are running at lower capacities (and some are closed), which has left many asking, “How can we feed the kids that can no longer come to my day care?” Sites can now offer and claim “grab and go” meals. This means you can take the meals & snacks for kids who are enrolled but can no longer attend your day care and pack them up TO GO!  To keep kids safe, parents are allowed to pick up their child(ren)’s “TO GO” meals/snacks during the emergency. For example, if you used to claim a child for breakfast, AM snack and lunch, the parents could pick up all of their child(ren’s) meals/snacks for the day in the morning.  


  •  Homes & Centers can claim up to 2 meals + 1 snack or 2 snacks + 1 meal, per child, per day.
    • (At Risk Afterschool Programs (ARAS) can claim 1 meal + 1 snack, per child, per day.)
  • All children must have an enrollment form on file to claim on the Food Program (except ARAS)
  • If you are currently receiving lower rates (Tier 2 for homes, Paid rates for centers) and a family’s (or home provider’s) financial situation has changed, it’s a great time to turn in a new income application for higher rates!
    • (At-Risk Afterschool Programs rates do not change.)
  • Capacities During COVID:
    • Day care facilities should check with their DCFS representative on their maximum capacity during  Phase 4 of reopening. 
  • Food Shortages? Do your best to make a creditable substitution if you run out of a food/meal component. However, if you cannot meet meal pattern requirements (ex. the store is out of milk), please contact the DCR office. The state can grant an emergency waiver on a case-by-case basis. (USDA Child Nutrition Response #36)

USDA Flexibilities During the COVID Emergency

#34 – Meals/snacks can be served outside of meal times during COVID-19

#33 – Meals/Snacks do NOT have to be served in a group (or “congregate”) setting during COVID-19:

#35 – Parents can pick up meals for their kids during COVID-19:

#3 – Enrichment activities do NOT have to be offered at At-Risk fter School (ARAS) sites during COVID-19.

Grab n' Go: Serving Multiple Meals

 Serving "Grab n' Go" meals for kids who can no longer come to your day care due to COVID? 
Did you know you can give out more than 1 day of meals & snacks at once? 
Check out this USDA tip sheet:

Prevent Deductions! Serve ONE (1) Whole Grain Each Day

 Starting October 1, 2018, facilities who do NOT have ONE whole grain recorded for the day (on days when a grain was required/served) will be deducted for the lowest paying meal or snack that has a grain on that day. Each time you serve a whole grain, make sure to record it to ensure you get credit.

Whole Grains

Center Move/Transfer Policy

If a facility would like to transfer from one sponsoring organization to another, there are certain guidelines and policies that must be followed.  Here is the transfer policy for Day Care Resources.
Center Move/Transfer Policy


Day Care Resources now has an AmazonSmile account. When you shop at AmazonSmile, Amazon donates 0/5% of the purchase price to Day Care Resources, Inc. Bookmark this website: and support us every time you shop!

Vegetarian Meals

 Are you looking for ways to cut down on your grocery bill? Do you care for vegetarian children? If so, you may want to consider serving a few vegetarian meals at your center. Plant based meals can help save money, serve vegetarian children, and improve health! Log in to check out our vegetarian resources, including recipes and over 2 months of meal ideas!

Low Fat Milk Required for Ages 2 and Over

According to a new USDA requirement,  low fat milk (1% or skim) must be served to all children age 2 and older. 1 year olds must receive whole milk according to DCFS Regulations. Centers must be in compliance by October 1, 2011.

Start now to transition kids from high fat (whole and 2%) to low fat (1% or skim) milk! Low fat milk contains the same amount of bone-building nutrients as whole milk. However, switching from whole to 1% milk can reduce fat by 17 grams in one day!  

Check out our special bulletin "The Food Program is MOO-VING to LOW FAT MILK!"
English | Español


Keep Your Food Program Records!

According to the USDA, home day care providers must:

- Keep all food program records for 3 years from the date of submission.

- Have 1 year (plus the current month) of records available at reviews.

- Have access to the remaining years of records. These records can be stored off site.