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Kalamazoo Child Care Access Fair aims to help local residents open child care businesses

child care
Posted at 2:05 PM, May 13, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-13 14:05:02-04

PORTAGE, Mich. — Child care has become a hot-button issue recently from costs to staffing shortages.

This weekend you can learn more about starting or advancing a career in child care at the Kalamazoo Child Care Access Fair hosted by the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA).

It's a place for people to connect with child care partners to learn more about the field, like how to expand into a child care center or how to start a child care business in your home.

The event is being held at the Kalamazoo Regional Education Service Agency in Portage and runs Saturday, May 14, from 12 – 2 p.m.

LARA says registration is recommended for the free event.

According to LARA, free business startup support is available to entrepreneurs, including:

• Up to $750 reimbursed for compliance startup costs for new businesses
• FREE AT&T Hot Spots - with an AT&T service contract required for activation
• FREE Radon test kits - 1000 kits available courtesy of Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes & Energy (EGLE)
• FREE background checks
• FREE professional development
• FREE onsite mobile fingerprinting will be available by appointment only. This opportunity is for current child care providers with active background check account.

Child care licensing staff at the fair will help entrepreneurs walk through the necessary steps to open a licensed facility including:

1. Submit a complete application packet that includes:
• Application
• Verify completion of required health and safety training
• Pass a facility inspection, including radon and environmental health inspections
• Obtain medical clearance, including a current TB test

2. Register fingerprints and establish eligibility to work with children

3. Attend a LARA Rules Orientation Session

4. Pass a final facility inspection prior to opening

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