Low- and moderate-income working parents can receive state subsidies for child care, including preschool instruction, after-school programs for children up to age 13, and care for children and teens with special needs.
Subsidized care may be provided under contracts between the state and licensed child care centers or through voucher certificates, which allow parents to choose a child care program. The vouchers can be used for a variety of child care, such as licensed centers and registered family day care homes, which are allowed to care for five children at a time.
Children whose families receive cash assistance under the state welfare program, WorkFirst NJ, are entitled to free child care. Former WorkFirst NJ participants receive subsidized child care for up to two years after moving from welfare to work. Those clients make a small co-payment which varies based on family size and income.
Families who were never on welfare also can receive child care subsidies under the New Jersey Cares for Kids program. Families earning up to 200 percent of the federal poverty level qualify for subsidies. After one year, a family remains eligible with an income up to 250 percent of the federal poverty level.
Child Care Eligibility Chart (pdf)
To learn more about state subsidies, or for help in finding quality child care, call the Child Care Helpline at: 1-800-332-9227 or contact your county's Child Care Resource & Referral (CCR&R) Agency
Child Care Helpline: 1-800-332-9227