The North Dakota Women’s Business Center (NDWBC) applauds the recent approval of $65.6 million in funding by the North Dakota Legislature to address the state’s childcare dilemma. The funds will support families with childcare stipends, provide grants for childcare businesses, and support an employer-led cost-share program, among other initiatives.

As a center that works with women business owners throughout the state, NDWBC is uniquely aligned with the funding recipients. Last fall, the organization hosted listening sessions across the state. The findings concluded that accessibility and affordability were key obstacles for women seeking business ownership. Many cited the lack of access to high-quality and affordable childcare as the factors which forced them to choose between maintaining their jobs and caring for their families. As a result, women, who still primarily shoulder caregiving responsibilities, delay pursuing entrepreneurship until their children are grown or caregiving responsibilities have otherwise concluded.

NDWBC recently completed its first 10-week program, Industry Intensives, focused on providing business resources to childcare providers.

To address these issues, NDWBC recently completed its first Industry Intensives for childcare providers, a 10-week program designed to help childcare providers grow their business and leadership skills and solve workforce challenges. Childcare owners face unique challenges in business, including high labor costs and narrow margins, which make it difficult to provide the high-quality and affordable childcare that the labor sector seeks. The intensive program was a partnership with Child Care Aware of North Dakota (CCA) to provide business resources to childcare providers.

Executive Director Christy Dauer shares how NDWBC works to address the needs of ND childcare providers and offset the states childcare shortage.

“Childcare owners face unique challenges in business, and we are thrilled to be in partnership with CCA to collaborate and bring business resources to them,” said Christy Dauer, Executive Director of NDWBC.

“I had the privilege to meet some of the amazing individuals working in our North Dakota childcare industry through this intensive. The success of the program came from the participants’ determination to support their community and our childcare industry’s future. Each week this group of professional women met in the evenings, after working all day, to build on their business acumen, connect on key issues facing the industry, and ideate on ways they can support each other and advocate for their profession,” she said.

NDWBC is committed to supporting women business owners and addressing the challenges they face in starting and growing their businesses. The recent funding for childcare initiatives in North Dakota is a step in the right direction for both families and small businesses in the state.

Visit for more information on NDWBC and its programs.