$95,000 to Help United Way Expand Access to Quality Childcare in Southern Maine Secured by Senator Collins in Funding Bill

Washington, D.C.—U.S. Senator Susan Collins, a senior member of the powerful Senate Appropriations Committee, announced today that she secured $95,000 in the draft Fiscal Year 2022 Financial Services Appropriations bill to help United Way of Southern Maine expand access to quality child care.  The bill, which was officially released by the full Appropriations Committee this week, must still be voted on by the full Senate and House.


“The ongoing public health and economic crisis has underscored the fact that parents and employers alike need more quality child care options.  United Way of Southern Maine is a longtime leader in this important area, and they are hard at work to increase this needed access and improve the lives of families and communities,” said Senator Collins.  “This funding would assist them in their efforts and enable United Way to provide more support and training for Mainers looking to launch childcare businesses and open facilities across the region. I will continue to champion this funding as the appropriations process moves forward.”


“Without affordable, accessible, and quality childcare entire segments of our community are removed from employment or education opportunities – holding back families from becoming financial stable and shrinking our workforce,” said Liz Cotter Schlax, President & CEO, United Way of Southern Maine.  “The pandemic has shone a spotlight on the fragility of our childcare system and exacerbated the extreme need in Southern Maine. This federal support could not come at a more crucial time, and we thank Senator Collins for her leadership in securing $95,000 to enable six entrepreneurs to open new childcare businesses, which will support more than 70 children and their families.” 


If the Fiscal Year Financial Services bill is enacted into law, this funding will help United Way of Southern Maine to expand their Childcare Workforce and Entrepreneurship Initiative, which helps new childcare entrepreneurs successfully navigate their journey, with the necessary support, training, technical assistance, and financial investment to open their own childcare business.