Child Care Subsidy


The Wake County Child Care Subsidy Program provides financial assistance for parents and their child care needs. The amount of child care subsidy for each family is based on an assessment of need, income and family size. Every year Wake County receives state and federal funds to be used for subsidized child care services for its residents. We also provide information about choosing and using quality child care.


You may be eligible to receive child care assistance if one or more of the following situations apply to your family:

  • You are working;
  • You are in school or in a job training program;
  • Your child is receiving child protective services;
  • Your child needs care to support child welfare services or if your family is experiencing a crisis; or  
  • Your child has developmental needs.

You must be the parent or legal guardian of the child receiving subsidy benefits. Most families are required to pay a percentage of their child care costs based upon their gross monthly income. The percentage is normally around 10%.

Waiting List

If Wake County Health & Human Services does not have enough funding to serve all families who apply for subsidized child care, the families can request to be placed on a waiting list until funding becomes available. Anyone can apply for the waiting list by contacting Wake County Health & Human Services at 919-212-9285 (English, Spanish) or [email protected]. Families will be contacted via email or letter when funding becomes available.

It is critical that all families keep their contact information updated. This can be done by contacting us in one of the ways mentioned above. 

Additional Resources

NC Division of Child Development and Early Education

The mission of the NC Department of Health and Human Services is, in collaboration with our partners, to protect the health and safety of all North Carolinians and provide essential human services.

More information on child care subsidy.

Wake County Smart Start

Wake County Smart Start is a nonprofit organization with the mission to ensure children in Wake County, birth to age five, are prepared for success in school and in life. Officially formed in 1996, Wake County SmartStart works to improve the quality, accessibility and affordability of child care, provide preventive health and early intervention services and offer family support services. Wake County Smart Start administers the NCPreK program which operates in Wake County Public Schools and various child care facilities across the county.

More information on Wake County Smart Start

Child Care Services Association (CCSA)

Child Care Services Association (CCSA) is a nationally recognized nonprofit working to ensure affordable, accessible, high-quality child care for all families through research, services and advocacy. Child Care Services Association provides free referral services to families seeking child care, technical assistance to child care businesses, and educational scholarships and salary supplements to child care professionals through the T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® and Child Care WAGE$® projects.

More information on Child Care Services Association

Contact Us

Wake County Health & Human Services
Call: 919-212-9285 (English, Spanish) Email: [email protected].