Exciting News!

Mid-September, FCCAM submitted the following letter of nomination for the Early Childhood Advisory Council to Ana Hicks, Children’s Cabinet Coordinator. 
Ana Hicks
Children’s Cabinet Coordinator
Sept 12, 2019
My name is Deborah Arcaro, I serve as Chair of the Governance Committee of the Family Child Care Association of Maine (FCCAM). The Family Child Care Association of Maine was formed in 2016 and is registered as a nonprofit organization with the State of Maine and a 501c3 federal nonprofit. In addition, we are the State affiliate of the National Association for Family Child Care (NAFCC). The mission of FCCAM is to unify, promote and strengthen quality professional family child care in the State of Maine. It is our goal to achieve the highest standards in Maine’s diverse legal family child care homes, promoting the physical, intellectual, emotional, and social development of children by:
– Enhancing the quality of family child care.
– Strengthening and expanding the family child care network.
– Providing support through mentoring and resources for family child care providers.
– Communicating a positive image and information about the benefits of family child care to the broad community (local, state, federal) through research, advocacy, legislation and effective marketing.
– Coordinating with community and social service agencies at all levels to support children and families.
– Developing leadership and advocacy skills for family child care providers through education, training, exposure and identifying ways to be proactive.

The Family Child Care Association of Maine’s Board believes establishing one Early Childhood Advisory Council to develop and evaluate a plan for the healthy development of the State’s young children and their families is the best use of talents and resources. We know first hand that family child care professionals are an integral part of the child care structure in Maine, providing a much needed service to the diverse communities of our state, which is important in supporting the children, their families and the economy of the state. 

On June 27, 2019, FCCAM sent it’s original request for a seat on the Early Childhood Advisory Council feeling that our mission, goals, and credentials qualified our Association for representation. While FCCAM works in collaboration with other organizations within Maine that are concerned about the health and well-being of children and families, it is the only non-profit professional statewide association in Maine that offers support focused on family child care professionals.  

FCCAM provided testimony on LD 1778 “An Act To Amend the Laws Concerning the Children’s Cabinet and Its Advisory Councils”, recommending the language for (H) specifically require representation from family child care providers. We were very pleased to see the amendment to the Membership section that is requiring (I) Two persons representing statewide, membership or constituent organizations for public and private family child care providers, nominated by their organizations.  

On behalf of the Family Child Care Association of Maine’s Governance Committee, I respectfully submit the following family child care providers for consideration to fill the 2 seats under (I) on the Early Childhood Advisory Council, which will be under the direction of the Children’s Cabinet. Each of these individuals has been intentionally chosen as they not only represent the diversity of family child care providers across the state, but are actively engaged with their peers and continue to show their desire to strengthen family child care in Maine.

Chrissie Davis, Skowhegan, licensed family child care provider since 2001. Currently serves mixed-ages.Chrissie is a Home Start provider. Her program, Bouncing Bubbles Child Care, is NAFCC accredited and Step 4 with Quality for ME (Maine’s Quality Rating System). 
Chrissie’s credentials:
– Associate of Science in Early Childhood Education 
– Family Child Care CDA 
– Maine Youth Development Credential
– CACFP Child Nutrition Professional certification
– Chair of the Family Child Care Association of Maine (FCCAM)
– Chair of FCCAM’s Public Policy Committee
– Member of the National Association for Family Child Care (NAFCC) 
– Member of the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) and it’s Maine affiliate (MaineAEYC)
– Participates in the MRTQ Strengthening Family Child Care Collaboration 
– Participating in the ECE Policy Leadership Program

Sasha Shunk, Portland, licensed family child care provider since 2003. Currently serves mixed ages.Sasha’s program, Shunk Child Care, is NAFCC accredited and Step 4 with Quality for ME (Maine’s Quality Rating System). 
Sasha’s credentials: 
– Bachelor’s of Science in Early Childhood Education
– Master’s of Science in Early Education (expected graduation date 2021)
– Treasurer of the Family Childcare Association of Maine (FCCAM) 
– Chair of FCCAM’s Outreach Committee 
– Member of the National Association for Family Child Care (NAFCC)
– Member of the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) and it’s Maine affiliate (MaineAEYC) 
– Participates in the MRTQ Strengthening Family Child Care Collaboration
– Westbrook’s Children’s Project Committee Member
– Portland’s Starting Strong Birth-5 School Readiness Committee Member
– Portland’s Workforce Development Team Committee Member

Thank you for the opportunity to nominate active family child care providers who are members of the Family Child Care Association of Maine (FCCAM) for membership on the Early Childhood Advisory Council.  

FCCAM received word in early Oct that the Children’s Cabinet voted to approve the nominations of both Chrissie and Sasha to participate in the Children’s Cabinet’s Early Childhood Advisory Council!

The Children’s Cabinet is established to promote and support active, vigorous and frequent interdepartmental collaboration on children and youth policy development and program implementation supporting the provision of services for Maine families, children and youth that are planned, managed and delivered in an integrated manner to support and enhance educational opportunities, self-sufficiency, safety, economic stability, health and well-being.
The cabinet shall collaborate to create, manage and promote coordinated policies, finances, programs and service delivery systems to support children, youth and families consistent with the purposes of this chapter.
The Maine Children’s Cabinet Early Childhood Advisory Council was created to develop, maintain and evaluate under the direction of the cabinet a plan for sustainable social and financial investment in healthy development of the State’s young children and their families.