The COVID-19 pandemic is an uncertain and stressful time for everyone. The situation is changing rapidly and there are a lot of questions. We are doing our very best to provide an up-to-date page of resources for providers and parents in regards to child care during this unprecedented time.


Hotline Information

  • Hotline number for Child Care Providers: 1-888-234-1268
  • Information on providers available to care for children of emergency and critical workers: 888.291.9811.

Emergency Fund for Child Care

The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted almost all areas of our economy and daily lives. Child care providers are in a unique position to provide a crucial service, especially to first responders, health care staff, and other essential workers, yet many child care programs are having an even harder time than usual staying in business during this crisis.

Think Small is taking swift action to support child care providers during this unprecedented time by prioritizing supports for licensed family child care programs in the seven-county metro area who serve the children of first responders, emergency personnel, health care workers or anyone else deemed essential to work during this crisis. 

Grant Application

Apply for Think Small COVID-19 Emergency Grant

We have set up a Think Small COVID-19 Emergency Grant. Effective immediately and on a first-come, first-serve basis, Think Small will be awarding $1000 to eligible licensed family child care providers in the seven-county metro area. Click the button below to apply. Applications are available in English, Hmong, Somali and Spanish. Need additional language access support? Please call 651-665-0150. Think Small will communicate directly with providers who are awarded these funds and will continue awarding as funds are available.

We are no longer accepting applications at this time. Please read our FAQs regarding notifications, other grant options, and more.

Apply for State Peacetime Emergency Child Care Grants

Applications for the Peacetime Emergency Child Care Grants are now being accepted. These grants are for licensed child care providers serving essential workers during the COVID-19 public health emergency. Child care programs eligible to apply for grants include licensed family and group family programs, licensed child care centers, and tribally licensed child care programs. Selected applicants will receive an award on a month-to-month basis. Monthly grant awards start at $4,500, with an additional $1,000 available for programs providing non-standard hours care, care for children whose first language is not English, and/or who have special needs. Providers that are licensed to serve 15 or more children will be eligible for an additional amount of up to $15,500 per month.

The deadline to apply is May 12, with award decisions on May 18.

Apply for State Peacetime Emergency Child Care Grants

Consider Contributing to Our Emergency Fund for Child Care

As an agency, we are working to find ongoing funding, but these dedicated family child care providers need your help NOW.  If you are able to donate, it will make all the difference in the world to a program in your neighborhood, and to the health care workers and other essential personnel who are able to keep doing their jobs for the benefit of society.

Please Support Our Efforts

ParentPowered Texts

At home with your young children? Now is the perfect time to try our free Think Small ParentPowered Texts. You’ll receive three text messages a week offering fun facts and at-home learning activities, plus you’ll find additional support messages focused on COVID-19 topics for children.

Click the button below and fill out the form to sign up for Think Small ParentPowered Texts today!

Sign Up for Parent Powered Texts