Jobless get help with childcare

Some help for the unemployed with children, or at least those in parts of North Carolina, is being offered through a childcare program.

The Little Pros Academy announced Tuesday a free drop-in childcare program to assist families needing childcare assistance while interviewing for jobs.

As an unemployed father of a 4-year-old girl who is often underfoot while I look for a job, I appreciate such an effort and hope that other agencies start offering similar programs. Luckily, my wife works full-time at night, so I can schedule job interviews in the mornings and be home in the afternoon to take over childcare duties at our house. But as anyone looking for work knows, it's a full-time job looking for a full-time job, and having a safe place to leave your child while you go to a job interview is a big help.

"Little Pros Academy recognizes the strain being placed on families in today's difficult economic environment, and has created this program to assist families who might not be able to find care elsewhere when going to job interviews," according to a press release.

The program is available at its North Carolina facilities in Morrisville, East Cary and will most likely be expanded to the new North Raleigh location when it opens in March 2009, according to the press release. It notes that care will be based on current space availability for toddlers through pre-kindergarten children.

Now if some organization would only offer such help the rest of the day, when the job search or part-time work is in full swing. In the time I've been writing this, my daughter has interrupted me five times to help her find a toy, get a snack and turn the TV on. Yes, the TV, the perfect babysitter.

Aaron Crowe is an unemployed journalist in the San Francisco Bay Area. Follow his job hunt at www.talesofanunemployeddad.blogspot.com

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