When the world shut down with the COVID-19 pandemic, child care heroes across the state stayed open, adopting new rigorous health and safety protocols so that essential workers could keep working. In Los Angeles County, child care health & safety guidance was comprehensive, but differed somewhat from the state guidance. The guidance was also dense, and could be difficult to operationalize in child care settings.
First 5 Los Angeles, LA County Public Health, the LA County Child Care Planning Committee, and the California Community Foundation funded an extensive COVID-19 saw something missing: a COVID public education campaign specifically for early care and education providers and families with children in child care. They needed one place to go for information, where there was clear information about how to provide high quality child care in this new, insane time. And they needed it fast.
How do you distill and share complex information to keep children, families, and child care workers safe?
First 5 LA and the Los Angeles Child Care Response Team wanted a resource to support child care programs to effectively implement the guidance while ensuring high quality care, so VIVA developed www.childcareheroes.org.
This website provided robust and easy-to-navigate information on guidance, best practices, and, eventually, information on the COVID-19 vaccine roll-out. Everything was in plain language. Providers could find the guidance they needed clearly and easily, and parents could see how to protect themselves and their kids.
From the start, racial equity was a driving priority. Information on how to operationalize health and safety guidance in child care programs was adapted for targeted sub-audiences (child care centers and family child care, in English and in Spanish) on a mobile-first website; the transadaption of all information into Spanish ensured that content was meaningfully connected to the broader COVID-19 messaging among Spanish-speaking Latino communities.
VIVA led a robust digital campaign in Los Angeles County with the rollout of the website. Social media content drove users to the website and shared time-sensitive and high priority COVID-19 resources and information with providers to ensure they understood the urgent new health and safety standards. Priority content pages received more than 35,000 page views with the average amount of time spent on these pages exceeding 3 minutes–far exceeding standard benchmarks for this metric. Meanwhile, VIVA grew the organization’s Facebook followers by 500% and generated 190,000+ targeted impressions using paid micro-targeted advertisements.
Across the website, social media, and digital ads, Child Care Heroes’ information on COVID-19 and child care has been utilized more than 1 million times. We were proud to support LA County’s early educators during the challenges of the pandemic.