Childcare assistance for the Oklahomans who keep us safe and well.

Through December 2020, the Oklahoma Department of Human Services is moving quickly to help our healthcare workers and first responders enlist family to provide in-home childcare by covering all expenses.

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Why we created kith.care

In response to the COVID-19 crisis and the ensuing safer at home orders, many essential workers have been unable to take their children to their normal daycares and schools. This crisis has put additional stress on the people our state needs most at this time and prevented some of these workers from being able to work to their full capacity. Kith.care was created by the State of Oklahoma to help essential workers utilize family to provide in-home childcare.

What is kith.care?

In what is likely the fastest response time in OKDHS history, a task force was created to design, build, and implement an entirely new childcare program that aims to help alleviate the stress of childcare for healthcare workers and first responders in a time of crisis by facilitating payment to family members who are willing and approved to provide childcare. To quickly and easily facilitate the approval of healthcare workers, first responders, and their families, we built an innovative mobile-first software platform from the ground up. The lean, SMS-driven solution has allowed us to rapidly deploy this program to all Oklahomans and automate the application, tracking, and payment processes. OKDHS employees are working around the clock to ensure our essential workers and their designated caretakers are being approved as fast as possible.

Who qualifies for kith.care?

You qualify for this program if you work for one of the following:

  • Hospital Staff
  • Senior Living Staff
  • Fire Fighters
  • Ambulance Services
  • Law Enforcement
  • OK Office of Juvenile Affairs Essential Employee
  • OK Department of Corrections Essential Employee
  • OK Department of Human Services Essential Employee
  • OK Health Department Essential Employee
  • Foster Family in Oklahoma
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How does kith.care work?

Step 01:

Essential Worker Register

Once an essential worker submits the following OKDHS will review application and send approval via text message typically within 24 hours.

  • Job and employer information
  • Paystub within the last 30 days

Who qualifies as an essential worker?

Step 02:

Caretaker(s) Register

A notification will immediately be sent to caretaker to provide the following:

Once approved, caretakers and essential workers will be notified (via text) to provide banking information to for payment processing.

Step 03:

Timesheet Approval and Receive Payment

A mobile timesheet will be sent (via text) every Friday at 5pm to the caretaker where they can input the previous (7) days worked.

Essential workers will be asked to approve time sheet by Sunday night at 11:59 PM CST.

Payment will be processed two weeks from the following Monday.

Looking for resources to supplement at-home education?

We’ve compiled a list of at-home childcare & educational resources for both parents and caretakers.

View Resources List

Frequently Asked Questions

Who can provide childcare?

An essential worker can appoint a grandparent, brother, sister, step-brother, step-sister, uncle, aunt, or cousin over the age of 18 and lives outside of the home as a caretaker. The caretaker must provide proof of CPR certification and pass a background check. At-home childcare and education resources for both parents and caretakers are available here.

What if the person I want to provide care for my children does not have a current CPR certification?

If you do not have a current CPR certification, you can get one in about three hours online by going to the Red Cross online. Caretakers will be required to upload either a photo, screenshot, or PDF of their certification during the application process.

How much are caretakers paid to provide childcare?

$25 per day per child

How many days per week will kith.care pay a caretaker to provide childcare?

5 days per week

How are caretakers paid?

Caretakers are paid by DHS via a direct transfer to a bank account. Caretakers must provide an account and routing number or debit card number to be paid.

Do caretakers have to pay taxes on the payments received?

Caretakers are considered independent contractors and therefore are responsible for withholding and paying their own taxes. Please consult a tax professional for your specific situation.

Can a caretaker provide care for more than one child?

A caretaker can provide care for multiple children from the same family. However, a caretaker can only be reimbursed for providing care for one family per day

How long will this program be available?

This program will end on December 31st, 2020.

How many hours does it take to count as a day?

Four hours or more of childcare in a single day.

Can two or more caretakers watch my children each day?

Yes, however, reimbursement is calculated based on a daily rate. When logging time, only one caretaker can receive payment for each day.

Can child care be provided in either the caretaker’s or child’s home?

No, per state law child care must be provided in the child’s own home.

How quickly will my application be approved by DHS? (Expected turnaround time)

Our goal is within one business day.

Can I use Kith.Care in addition to DHS funded daycare?

Yes, but a Kith.care caretaker cannot receive payment on the same days as daycare.

How old can my child be and still qualify for DHS Funded Childcare?

The maximum age for children to still qualify for DHS Funded Childcare  is 12 years old.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who can provide childcare?

An essential worker can appoint a grandparent, brother, sister, step-brother, step-sister, uncle, aunt, or cousin over the age of 18 and lives outside of the home as a caretaker. The caretaker must provide proof of CPR certification and pass a background check. At-home childcare and education resources for both parents and caretakers are available here.

What if the person I want to provide care for my children does not have a current CPR certification?

If you do not have a current CPR certification, you can get one in about three hours online by going to the Red Cross online. Caretakers will be required to upload either a photo, screenshot, or PDF of their certification during the application process.

How much are caretakers paid to provide childcare?

$25 per day per child

How many days per week will kith.care pay a caretaker to provide childcare?

5 days per week

How are caretakers paid?

Caretakers are paid by DHS via a direct transfer to a bank account. Caretakers must provide an account and routing number or debit card number to be paid.

Do caretakers have to pay taxes on the payments received?

Caretakers are considered independent contractors and therefore are responsible for withholding and paying their own taxes. Please consult a tax professional for your specific situation.

Can a caretaker provide care for more than one child?

A caretaker can provide care for multiple children from the same family. However, a caretaker can only be reimbursed for providing care for one family per day.

How long will this program be available?

This program will end on December 31st, 2020.

How many hours does it take to count as a day?

Four hours or more of childcare in a single day.

Can two or more caretakers watch my children each day?

Yes, however, reimbursement is calculated based on a daily rate. When logging time, only one caretaker can receive payment for each day.

Can child care be provided in either the caretaker’s or child’s home?

No, per state law child care must be provided in the child’s own home.

How quickly will my application be approved by DHS? (Expected turnaround time)

Our goal is within one business day.

Can I use Kith.Care in addition to DHS funded daycare?

Yes, but a Kith.care caretaker cannot receive payment on the same days as daycare.

How old can my child be and still qualify for DHS Funded Childcare?

The maximum age for children to still qualify for DHS Funded Childcare is 12 years old.

Apply Now

If you are a parent who is either a healthcare worker or first responder and is in need of childcare, enter your mobile phone number to receive an application link via SMS.

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