Family Eligibility & How to Apply

Child

Child Care Assistance (CCAP) is available to:

  • Low-income families who meet income guidelines and are working a minimum of 20 hours per week at or above Rhode Island's minimum wage.
  • Families participating in training, apprenticeship, internship, on-the-job training, work experience, work immersion sponsored by the Governor’s Workforce Board, who need child care in order to take part in these job readiness/training opportunities.
  • Families participating in the Rhode Island Works program.
  • Pregnant/Parenting Teens participating in DHS’ Youth Success program.

Also available to families is Transitional Child Care:

Allows families already participating in the CCAP program to remain eligible for the subsidy program if their income increases and does not exceed 225% of the federal poverty level.

Can I get CCAP?

Families with incomes at or below 180 percent of the federal poverty level (FPL) who meet the requirements for CCAP are eligible to receive full or partial payment for child care expenses when delivered by a CCAP-approved child care provider. There are two avenues for qualifying for payment of child care expenses through the CCAP:

  • Categorical Eligibility: The Rhode Island TANF Program extends eligibility for the CCAP to Rhode Island Works Program (RIW) cash assistance recipients, including Youth Services (YS) Program participants, who meet the critieria for categorical eligibility.
  • Income Eligibility: Working Rhode Island families, families where a parent(s) is participating in an approved education and training program, and YS participants who are not RIW cash recipients may be income eligible for the CCAP if they meet the criteria for income eligibility.

How do I know if I am eligible?

For a child to be eligible to participate in the Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP), the family applying for CCAP services shall meet the general requirements set forth as well as the specific requirements pertaining to either categorical or income eligibility. To be eligible for the CCAP the following requirements have been met:

    Age of applicant child(ren)

    The child to receive CCAP services shall be over one (1) week old and below the age of thirteen (13) years unless:

    • The child is under age thirteen (13) and would be considered a dependent child for the purposes of Rhode Island Works (RIW) except for the receipt of Supplemental Security Income, or foster care services under Title IV-E. This rule applies only in those instances in which child care is necessary for a parent to accept or retain employment or to participate in a RIW approved education or training program.
    • The child is thirteen (13) up through eighteen (18) years old and has a documented physical or mental disability which makes the child incapable of self-care; or
    •  The child turns thirteen (13) years during the certification period and remains eligible until redetermination

    Relationship

    The applicant child(ren) must live in the home of the parent requesting CCAP services. The relationship between the adult applying for CCAP services and each applicant child must meet the broad definition of parent.

    Residency

    The applicant parent(s) and any applicant children in the financial unit shall be residents of the State of Rhode Island.

    Citizenship

    • The applicant child shall be either a citizen of the United States or a qualified immigrant. There is no five year waiting period for qualified immigrant children to be eligible for CCAP.
    • The adult applying for CCAP for an eligible child shall not be required to provide proof of citizenship or immigration status.
    •  The Department utilizes the State Verification and Exchange System (SVES) to validate Social Security Numbers (SSNs) and verify an applicant/recipient’s citizenship.

    Need for Services

    • RI Works or youth parents involved in the Youth Services/Home Visiting Program: must be in an approved education and training activity or work plan activity
    • Income eligible / low-income families with income below one hundred eighty percent (180%) of the federal poverty level: must be employed or participating in an approved education and/or training program, and are unavailable to provide routine care for the child(ren). The training can be an apprenticeship, internship, on-the-job training, work experience, work immersion or other job readiness/job attachment programs

    Cooperation with the Office of Child Support Services (OCSS)

    All families with an absent parent(s) are referred to the Office of Child Support Services. As a condition of eligibility, the parent/caretaker relative is required to cooperate in establishing paternity, and in establishing and/or enforcing child support and medical support orders for all children in the family, unless the parent/caretaker relative is found to have good cause for refusing to comply with these requirements.

    How do I apply? 

    You can apply using the online Customer Portal, by phone (number below) or by filling out a paper application. All can be found on our Apply Now page.  

    The following is a helpful Verification Checklist for documents you may need to CCAP approval. 

    I am approved. Now what?

    Learn how to choose a child care provider for your child(ren) here

    For more information...

    Call 1-855-MY-RIDHS (1-855-697-4347) or TTY 1-800-745-5555 (for hearing impaired).