Welcome to the Child Care Referral Program!
The first step for assistance in finding or paying for child care is to contact your local Child Care Resource & Referral (CCR&R) Agency:
- Region 1: The Nurturing Center 146 Third Ave W, Kalispell 59901 406.756.1414, 800.204.0644 Fax:406.756.1410 nurturingcenter.org
- Region 2: Child Care Resources 105 East Pine Street Lower Level PO Box 7038 Missoula 59807 406.728.6446, 800.728.6446 Fax: 406.549.1189 childcareresources.org
- Region 3: Butte 4 C’s 101 East Broadway Butte 59701 406.723.4019, 800.794.4061 Fax:406.723.6982 butte4-cs.org
- Region 4: Child Care Connections 1600 Ellis Street Bozeman 59715 406.587.7786, 800.962.0418 Fax:406.587.682 childcareconnections.org
- Region 5: Family Connections 202 2nd Ave S, Suite 201 Great Falls 59405 406.761.6010, 800.696.4503 Fax:406.453.8976 FamilyConnectionsMT.org
- Region 6: Family Connections 2229 5th Ave Havre 59501 406.265.6743, 800.640.6743 Fax:406.265.1312 FamilyConnectionsMT.org
- Region 7: HRDC District 7 7 North 31st Street PO Box 2016 Billings 59103 406.247.4732, 800.443.1411 Fax:406.248.2943 hrdc7.org
Referral Specialists in Regions 5 & 6 are available extended hours on Mondays & Wednesdays from 5-7pm for child care referrals and provider updates. Families and Providers: call 761.6010 or 800.696.4503
You can get a list of child care providers in 3 different ways:
1. If you are located in Regions 5 or 6, complete the Child Care Needs Form. This information is transmitted to a Family Connections referral specialist and processed within 1-5 business days depending on current referral volume and the specific requirements you list. For an immediate listing, you can Create an Online Account to access provider information 24 hours per day.
Here are some tips when completing the form.
- The more complete the information, the better we can search for providers that match your requested needs.
- Information about employment, child care assistance, and demographics is strictly for statistical purposes.
- Children’s birthdays are needed because of regulations that determine adult to child ratios.
Below are brief descriptions of the different types of child cares. All are required to be registered/licensed with Montana unless otherwise specified.
- Family Child Care Homes offer a home-like atmosphere with a ratio of one caregiver to a maximum of six children including the provider’s own under the age of six.
- Group Child Care Homes are settings where two adults provide care for a maximum of 12 children including the provider’s own under the age of six. Care is often provided in a private home.
- Child Care Centers care for 13 or more children with hours that normally coincide with regular working hours.
- Preschools are part-day programs and are not regulated in Montana.
- Drop-in Child Cares are not regulated by Montana because the care provided is usually irregular and for shorter periods of time.
2. Create your own online account to access your referrals 24 hours a day. This service offers the ability to obtain immediate results by creating a client profile and pulling providers from our database based on your wants and needs. If you experience any technical difficulties or have any questions with this service, please contact a referral specialist at your local CCR&R.
3. For regions 5 or 6, call Family Connections at 406.761.6010 or 800.696.4503 (for other regions, call your local CCR&R) to complete the information over the phone with a referral specialist. This process can take up to 10 minutes to obtain all of your information and the referral will be processed and delivered within 1-5 business days depending on current referral volume and the specific requirements you list.
How long will it be before I get the list of child care providers?
Referral requests for immediate care (within two weeks) shall be processed and distributed to the parent within two (2) working days. Referral requests for future care (two+ weeks away) shall be processed and distributed to the parent within five working days.
What are the business hours for the Child Care Referral Program?
Family Connections regular business hours are Monday through Friday 8:00 am-5:00 pm.
What should I consider when choosing a child care provider?
We have a Guide to Choosing Quality Child Care a child care provider and further information to help your search. Family Connections does not recommend one program or provider over another, nor do we ensure vacancies within a facility. We encourage every parent to contact the child care licensor about all facilities being considered. We have the following links to help you find your local licensor , make a complaint against a licensed/registered provider and search online for substantiated complaints/ licensing deficiencies on a specific provider.