FRANKLIN COUNTY, Ohio (WCMH) — Franklin County is investing nearly $23 million in an initiative that will help families struggling to pay for childcare.  

The Franklin County commissioners announced the new RISE initiative, Thursday, in partnership with Action For Children.  

The investment won’t only help families pay for childcare, but also childcare providers and staff.

“As we reimagine what our child care system is going to look like coming out of the pandemic, some have tried to frame it as a choice between increasing affordability or improving quality,” Franklin County Commissioner Erica C. Crawley said.  “As a single mom of twins, I can tell you parents don’t see it as an either/or proposition—and neither does Franklin County.  Early care and education is an educational, workforce, and economic issue and must be top priority requiring our investment now.  The county’s investment will yield invaluable dividends now and for our community years later.” 

The funding for the investment comes from the American Rescue Plan, according to commissioners, and is said to help families who make too much to qualify for Publicly Funded Child Care (PFCC) but too little to actually afford child care.

RISE will provide early learning scholarships, incentive payments for child care programs, and financial supports for child care workers.

“The support to providers totals more than $11.3 million in four funding areas: as many as 750 providers are expected to receive up to $3,000 per year for taking on low-income families, up to $10,000 for improving their state ratings, and up to $5,000 per year for expanding to non-traditional hours.  In addition, $500,000 of the RISE funding is dedicated to emergency rental assistance for child care workers.  These vital teachers are predominantly women and people of color and chronically underpaid, with an average wage for credentialed lead teachers averaging just $12.22 per hour—about 41% of the median income for Franklin County.  RISE teacher supports will offer an average of $3,000 in rental assistance payments per household,” a release from the commissioners’ office states.

To read more about the Franklin County RISE program go to