A Family Child Care Association aims to increase the standard of care while also engaging other families within the same community. An FCCA provides a structure for families to share information on services, resources, and services available to help children and their carers to survive in an ever-changing environment. Informed members of a family child care association will be well informed on issues such as preventing the problem of neglect, promoting prevention of violence in care homes, preventing the issue of abuse and knowing the signs and symptoms of mental health problems. The FCCA also ensures that all members are aware of local child welfare services that can be of assistance to them.
The FCCA provides services to the community by: Providing technical assistance to families; conducting community awareness programs on health issues; disseminating information on child care programs; disseminating information on services that promote healthy family environments; assisting the development of community-based child care programs; and educating the community about FCCA programs. It also coordinates with local authorities and councils on matters of neighborhood development, child welfare, child protection and sexual education. It also participates in national and state political activities. The Family Child Care Association is governed by a board of directors that are elected at regular intervals.
The FCCA organizes two major conferences each year in Vancouver British Columbia, Canada. The first conference is FCCA Annual Meeting in Vancouver from March to April and the second is FCCA Annual Meeting in Ottawa from June to August. Both conferences are organized by the FCCA board of directors. Both conferences bring together a large number of related organizations and individuals from throughout Canada and the United States. The main feature of these two international conferences is the preparation of a comprehensive FCCA strategic plan.
During the first conference, held in Vancouver in March, the board adopted a policy regarding FCCA accreditation of child care programs and the provision of services by FCCA certified child care providers. The policy emphasizes the need for continuing education for all FCCA certified child care providers and makes it mandatory for providers to submit to FCCA continuing education requirements every two years. It calls for the establishment of a FCCA board of directors and makes FCCA accredited programs the first choice for the development of school-age children in Canada.
At the second conference, held in Ottawa in June, the FCCA reviewed the status of children experiencing homelessness and the measures being taken to prevent and eliminate this problem. The policy encourages providers to submit data to the Family Child Care Association (FCCA), so that it can provide appropriate information to the Family Development Teams charged with the responsibility of developing child care programs in all communities. The policy encourages providers to participate in FCCA work teams and to submit data on their performance to the association. Providers who do not comply with the provisions may be subject to sanction by the Association.
The FCCA has also developed a Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP), to assist families experiencing homelessness and other disadvantaged situations. The program offers financial, social and medical assistance to eligible families, and the provision of a Child Care Assistance Plan (CCAP) to all participating families. A detailed program summary and application package are available from the FCCA website. To be considered for the CCAP, families must have an approved Family Development Plan (an application, approved by the FCCA). Eligible families include families experiencing temporary unemployment or short term periods of child care.