Money for Daycares Keeps West Texans Working

By Cierra Putman
NewsWest 9

ODESSA - Affordable child care is hard to come by, especially for families on a tight budget.

Nationwide programs to help families make ends meet are being cut but not in Texas.

Instead millions in stimulus money is helping West Texas parents take care of their kids and work.

For many parents, the sounds at a daycare can be a god send.

Yesenia Bordayo says it means she can work worry free, but she remembers the days before she could afford daycare.

"When I first started working here my kids were on the wait list for the first time. During the Christmas and Thanksgiving breaks, I didn't have anybody to watch them," Bordayo said. "It affected me coming into work late and I had to get my family to watch them."

Thanks to the West Texas Opportunities Child Care Program, that's all in the past.

With $2.5 million in stimulus money, they've been able to help hundreds of families in the Basin. The money even eliminated their waiting list.

"Childcare is their last big expense," Program Director, Susan Taylor, said. "Once they get into the workforce and we are helping them and they're paying a portion the goal is for them to move up in their career ladder. Eventually come off the child care program and sustain themselves."

Bordayo says on top of helping her keep a job, the program also helps her kids, because it allows them to interact with other kids their age and learn.

Local daycares are also benefiting.

"We got more kids in and it's helped out a lot more parents," Dian Gouard with Odessa Day Nursery, said. "You know there's never enough money. So they come here and get good daycare for a good price and that helps them out a lot."

Bordayo says the program does more than help families save money.

"It helps them stay at a steady job where they can have dependable day care and they know they have somebody to watch their kids," she said.