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Completed Projects: A – L - Child Care Plus ME/RELATE

Child Care Plus ME/RELATE is a collaborative partnership between the University of Maine Center for Community Inclusion & Disability Studies and the Maine Department of Health and Human Services Early Childhood Division and Children’s Behavioral Health.

The project works to ensure that all infants, preschoolers, and children–including children with challenging medical needs, behavioral health care needs, and children who have or are at risk of developing disabilities/special needs, have an opportunity to be cared for and educated in high quality, inclusive schools and community child care settings, and parents can work.

Child Care Plus ME (CC+ME) staff work with child care professionals to more effectively support children with special needs and their families. CC+ME staff collaborate with state, regional, and local partners to strengthen Maine’s child care system.

RELATE Early Childhood Mental Health Consultants (ECMHC), in partnership with CC+ME staff, work with child care professionals and families to enhance the capacity of caregivers to promote, sustain and restore children’s healthy social emotional development.

Project consultation includes problem solving assistance and individualized training to support early care and education programs. Project staff work with program administrators, family child care providers, teachers, families, and other direct care staff. Consultation is provided in a variety of settings including private and not–for–profit child care centers, Head Start/Early Head Start, family child care homes, school age child care, legal unregulated child care, preschools/nursery schools, Pre-K/Head Start or Pre-K/Child Care collaborative programs, and community youth development recreation/child care programs.

Child Care Plus ME/RELATE staff also collaborate with the following agencies and organizations: Maine’s Child Care Resource Development Centers; the Maine Department of Health and Human Services Office of Child and Family Services; the Maine Department of Education Office of Special Services, Child Care Licensing, and Child Development Services; ASPIRE/TANF; early intervention and related service providers; the University of Southern Maine Edmund S. Muskie School of Public Service, Maine Roads to Quality; and others. Staff provide information and technical assistance to these collaborators to build their capacity to support increased access to and participation in quality inclusive early care and education for children with disabilities and other special needs.

To learn more about Child Care Plus ME/RELATE and the technical assistance process, please view:

Child Care Plus Me – A Resource for You

  • Child Care Plus Me – A Resource for You in HTML format (text)
  • Child Care Plus ME – A Resource for You in PDF format


  • RELATE – Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation (ECMHC) Brochure – (PDF)
  • Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation – What is it, why do we need it, what can consultants do?
  • Partnering with ECHMC in care and education settings – tips & resources.

To request technical assistance, please contact us at 207/892-0455 (V) or toll free in Maine at 866/230-4520 (V/TTY) or download the TA request form:

  • Child Care Plus ME/RELATE TA Request form (PDF) – Nov. 2011

A Consent for Release of Information form is also needed when the request is for an individual child. The form can be downloaded as well:

  • Child Care Plus ME/RELATE Consent for Release of Information (PDF) – Nov. 2011

Download Adobe Reader here


Consultation/technical assistance to early care and education programs/providers:

  1. Telephone/on–line consultation,
  2. Assistance in locating materials and resources,
  3. On-site visits/observations,
  4. Individualized training, Internet and self-study course activities, and
  5. Special needs subsidy funding to include a child or children with special needs in child care (funding is based on eligibility criteria and approval by DHHS).

Consultation to systems partners:

  1. Technical assistance to support efforts to make resource and referral services available to families of children with disabilities throughout the state;
  2. Assistance with the development and implementation of training opportunities that embed inclusive education;
  3. Research, development, and technical assistance in early childhood mental health consultation; and
  4. Research, data collection and the development of policy briefs, reports or literature reviews to identify systemic public policy/practice issues that affect access to child care services and prevent expulsions of children with disabilities and their families.

The CC+ME/RELATE project is part of Maine’s Early Childhood and School Age Child Care Technical Assistance (TA) Network. Download Maine’s Early Childhood and School Age Child Care Technical Assistance (TA) Network list (PDF) here.

Funding Source:

Maine Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Child and Family Services, Early Childhood Division, Children’s Behavioral Health.

Funding Period:

October 1, 2011 – February 29, 2012

CC+ME Contact Person:

Linda Labas
207/623-3925 (V)
877/475-4800 (V/TTY)
207/629-5429 (Fax)


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