Child Care Services Association (CCSA) began in 1974 as two independent organizations: the Durham Day Care Council in Durham County and Day Care Services Association in Orange County. Each organization was created in affiliation with its local United Way as an ongoing vehicle to meet community child care needs.

As the first child care resource and referral agency in North Carolina, the Durham Day Care Council created successful community programs including on-site technical assistance and training opportunities for child care providers. Meanwhile, Day Care Services Association (DCSA) focused on providing child care scholarships to low-income families and operating a meal delivery service for child care centers and homes. In addition to its direct services, DCSA collaborated with other organizations to conduct the first county and statewide early childhood workforce study.

In 1990, DCSA created the T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® Project, a program that provided scholarships to Triangle early childhood professionals that wished to pursue higher education and/or certification in the early childhood field. The program later went statewide; in 1995, T.E.A.C.H. licensed its first program outside of North Carolina. DCSA also created the Child Care WAGE$® Project, which provides salary supplements to early childhood educators to increase retention rates and improve the quality of early childhood education.

In 1999, after recognizing the need for coordinated and consolidated efforts, the Durham Day Care Council and Day Care Services Association merged to become Child Care Services Association. Since then, CCSA and its programs have seen unprecedented growth and improved service delivery.

Headquartered in the Triangle with offices in Durham and Orange counties, CCSA has become a leader and advocate in child care services on the local, state and national levels. We collaborate with many partners, businesses and stakeholders to address needs within the child care system.

In 2007, CCSA opened the Jim and Carolyn Hunt Child Care Resource Center in Durham. This building houses CCSA’s Child Care Resource and Referral division, Durham’s Partnership for Children (Smart Start, NC Pre-K and Early Head Start), and Durham’s Alliance for Child Care Access, which provides child care subsidies to low-income working families. By co-locating the three agencies, families and child care providers now have a one-stop resource center for all of their child care needs. CCSA is only a part of the broader community’s commitment to create systemic changes affecting everyone. As we grow, we come closer to the day when all children—and their teachers—have the tools they need for success.

Fulfilling a commitment to ensure accessible, affordable high-quality care for all children and families has been the driving force behind the pursuits of Child Care Services Association for more than four decades — but there is still much work to do. The present situation of child care and the coming future continue to offer new challenges. CCSA will strive to maintain its progress toward creating more opportunities for families and the best possible care for children.