Access to Childcare

Childcare Referral and Education

Counselors at CCSA provide information about childcare options in the community, the features of quality care, and referrals to programs that can meet specific family and child needs.  

Childcare Subsidy Prioritization

EDCI works closely with partners Durham County Social Services and Child Care Services Association (CCSA) to improve family access to high-quality childcare. Through these initiatives, families living in the EDCI Zone may be prioritized to receive childcare subsidies and scholarships. 

Early Literacy

Dolly Parton's Imagination Library

Dolly Parton's Imagination Library is an early literacy program that provides free, developmentally appropriate books to all children living in Durham ages 0-5 years-old. Until your child's fifth birthday, you can receive a specially-selected, high-quality book to your mailbox each month!

Other Early Literacy Efforts

EDCI engages with other early childhood initiatives and research studies related to early literacy. 

Book Babies

Book Babies is a kindergarten-readiness program that delivers 10 new books to low-income children every six months until they start kindergarten via home visits. The program also provides parents with literacy tools and activities.

Durham County Public Library

The Durham County Public Library offers reading lists, kids' ebooks, and other digital resources, as well as in-person and online story time events. 

EDCI Early Childhood Programs

EDCI Early Childhood Family Advocates

These bilingual EDCI team members are dedicated to walking alongside EDCI Zone families with children ages birth to eight years-old on their path to kindergarten. They provide monthly in-home and office-based education and support based on parents’ identified needs and interests, connections to resources, access to books, and parent cafés. 

EDCI Story Hour

Weekly, bilingual story hours to promote reading and literacy for young children and their caregivers.


EDCI LEAP Academy is a half-day, bilingual preschool program for children who live in the EDCI Zone. The Academy provides an enriching, hands-on learning environment and supports each child as they rise to their full potential.

Health and Wellness

Duke Integrated Pediatric Mental Health Initiative

An initiative aimed at improving children’s mental health while reducing the need for intensive hospital-based care and improving school attendance and academic performance.

Kindergarten Readiness

NC Pre-K Application Assistance

EDCI and Durham’s Partnership for Children support family access to the NC Prekindergarten program. Bilingual application assistance is provided to families at the EDCI office by trained staff and volunteers.  

Stepping Stones

This summer program, through Duke’s Office of Durham and Regional Affairs, helps incoming kindergartners at Y.E. Smith Elementary School who haven’t had any experience in a childcare setting prepare for kindergarten. 

Transition to Kindergarten Initiative

A series of special events and resources offered by Durham’s Partnership for Children and Durham Public Schools throughout the year for teachers and families to help make the transition to kindergarten smooth. 

Parent Education and Support

Triple P

Triple P (Positive Parenting Program) gives parents with young children simple tips to help manage challenging behaviors in positive and effective ways. Several EDCI staff members and partners are trained and available to share Triple P tips with interested families. 

Family Connects

Through this program, nurses make home visits to mothers and their newborns to ensure that they are on track for healthy development and connected to the resources they need. One bilingual nurse is dedicated to working with families specifically in the EDCI Zone. 

Healthy Families Durham

Weekly, home-based family support programs help parents promote their child’s development, create safe home environments, and prepare their child for school. Bilingual family support is offered to EDCI Zone families with children birth to three years old, as well as pregnant moms.

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