Having a family and kids is one of life's most precious things but it is also one of the more expensive. I mean, let's be real, if you aren't feeding and clothing the little beasties, you are trying to figure out how to pay for child care in order to go to work so you can buy all the food and clothing they need. You know things add up but when you are in a service industry and already not making a whole lot of money, something like child care is something that could mean the difference between working and staying at home.

People who work in retail, the food service or hospitality industry, or do something in the recreation, arts, or entertainment industry are going to be given a hand with free child care through Service Industry Recovery funding. SIR funding is part of the federal Cares Act and the Texas Workforce Commission. A family of 2 making less than $43,549 a year, or a family of 6 making less than $84,537 a year could qualify. There are requirements and you can click here to find out those requirements.

Tomislav Forgo

A family of 2 making less than $43,549 a year would qualify and if you think they should be able to afford child care consider this. That $43,000 works out to about $3,500 a month. The median rental on an 812 sq. ft. apartment is $886 a month. This website says utilities on an apartment are $172 a month. This website says the average national car payment is about $500. In 2015, the average for a month of child care for one child was $700. So far we are up to $2,258, leaving about $1,200 left for the month. Factor in $100 a week for groceries, which is pretty cheap, and you're down to $800 for the month. You need to buy clothes for the kids and you, cell phones aren't free and neither is Netflix or cable. Suddenly you are down to nothing. So what happens if an emergency pops up?

That's where money for free child care comes in. If you need this help and you are in the industries that are listed, you need to sign up and find out if you are eligible. If you aren't, there are other programs out there and I'm sure they can help you find one that suits you. Don't let money sit on the table if it's available.

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