Finding Child Care In Mesa County Can Be A Headache

Officials say more than 2,000 babies are born in Mesa County in a year. And while having a baby can be the most joyous time in a parent's life, finding child care can be one of the biggest headaches.

There's a day care dilemma sweeping Mesa County. While the population continues to grow, the number of child care providers isn't.

According to Cathy Story with the Early Childhood Partnership, there are 147 home-based licensed child care providers and 25 licensed centers in the county. Out of those providers only about half will take infants under the age of two.

It took Jillian Miller more than a month to find quality care for her two young children. Miller says most places were out of business.

Providers leaving the business is a trend that's taking a toll on the county. Story says it's just not a money making business.

After 10 1/2 years in the business, Renee Perry has called it quits and moved on to a nine to five job. Perry says she loved taking care of children but it just got to be too much. She says it was hard to please the Child Care Licensing Bureau and parents at the same time.

In Colorado, the average parent spends about $9,175 a year for child care. Story says if we could raise daily rates it might entice more people to go into the child care industry. However, she doesn't think parents would be able to afford it.

There are resources available to parents looking for child care.
By calling Mesa County's 2-1-1 info line a parent can request a list of all service providers in their area.

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