The National Association of Child Care Resource and Referral Agencies announced that Bath-based Steuben Child Care Project is the first in the country to achieve Quality Assurance status through new Best Practice standards.

The National Association of Child Care Resource and Referral Agencies announced that Bath-based Steuben Child Care Project is the first in the country to achieve Quality Assurance status through new Best Practice standards.
SCCP is a division of Pro Action Inc., established in 1985 as a nonprofit, 501(c) (3) community action agency serving low-­income children and families in Steuben and Yates counties, New York, for more than 40 years.
Their services include child care resource and referral, parent education, and facilitated enrollment into the child care subsidy program for parents; training and technical assistance, Child and Adult Care Food Program, business management including micro-­lending programs, health care consultancy; legally exempt provider enrollment and subsidy payments for child care providers/programs.
“We are what we kind of call the one-stop shop for child care,” SCCP director Carla Hibbard said last week.
“I like to think of NACCRRA’s quality assurance validation as an accreditation process...it’s a guarantee...that we follow a very rigorous best practice standard in delivering services to the community,”?Hibbard said.
SCCP was first given quality assurance standard for its parent service department in 2002 as part of a pilot project – one of 10 agencies in the country to participate.
In 2008, SCCP?was up for revalidation, and in the mean time, NACCRRA expanded the process to include all child care services and to agencies governance and administrative practices.
In September of that year, SCCP?began the two-year process of reaccreditation as part of a cohort of several other CCRR’s across the U.S.
“We just began the process, and after we started it, we were on this treadmill to be able to obtain this in the time that we needed to do it,”?Hibbard recalled.
“We became the frontrunners, and then in turn, turned out to be the first organization of ours in the nation to be able to obtain this validation.”
 SCCP received validation in December, 2010.
Now, the state Office of Children and Family Services is requiring all New York CCRRs to obtain NACCRRA best practice standards in order to request grand funding.
As the first in the nation to obtain this accreditation, SCCP has been providing some technical assistance and support to other agencies in New York and Kansas.
Hibbard said this accreditation helps to show those inside and outside Steuben County that as receivers of taxpayer funds, “we are accountable and good stewards of these funds, and we meet these best practices.”
She didn’t rest on the laurels of just SCCP, however. “We’re part of a larger organization that in itself operates that way as well,”?Hibbard said of Pro?Action overall. There is also a separate set of best practice standards that Pro Action has to meet.
Hibbard also gave credit to her staff, now 18 in all.
To celebrate its national status, SCCP made a formal announcement with a champaign toast and hors d’oeuvres in the Radisson Hotel in Corning Feb. 16.
Much of the costs for the celebration was underwritten by various contributors in Steuben County.