The National Family Child Care Conference is a special event for family child care providers across the United States to meet, network, and grow together. The conference provides an environment on unity in which many providers and advocates have met and became life-long friends. Providers share with us each year that they leave the conference re-energized and refocused to provide the highest quality of care for the children they work with. 

We've asked three providers, Debbie, Svitlana, and Mary to share their stories of attending the National Family Child Care Conference. Over the years, these three providers met and have become life-long friends who reconnect each year at the conference. They have supported each other as they became presenters at the conference, and this year, in Chicago, they presented a workshop together. 

We hope you enjoy their stories and that you join us in Orlando next summer!

Meet Debbie Grace

Meet Svitlana Uniyat

Meet Mary Beauregard

Meet Corinne Carr

MEET SVITLANA UNIYAT

                Attending the National Family Child Care Conferences has become an extraordinary experience for me. My first conference was in Scottsdale, Arizona, and it was an unforgettable experience because I won the National Accreditation Essay Contest and I met an amazing woman who approached me and said, “Congratulations on your award!” That woman was Debbie Grace, an accredited family child care provider, trainer, and mentor from Indiana. Debbie shared her stories about attending many NAFCC conferences. We talked about our work, successes, and disappointments. We soon discovered that we have a lot in common and we talked and talked. It seemed like we had known each other for forever. It was a memorable night.

                Since then, I have attended the National Family Child Care Conference every year where I am able to get motivated, get professional support, and make new friends. I connect with old friends, learn about new research in the field, and at every conference I get an opportunity to see my special friend, Debbie Grace.

                In 2015, I learned that my friend Debbie would be presenting at the conference in Minneapolis, so I decided to attend my friend’s very inspirational class. I held my first presentation at the National Family Child Care Conference in 2015, and Debbie was there for me. She attended my workshop and was very supportive. She became not on my friend, but also my mentor who willingly shared her knowledge and experience with me. Attending each other’s workshops helped me realize that it’s very helpful for child care providers to maintain a friendly, supportive community where we can share our experiences and learn from each other. It’s important for us to support and motivate each other. We must be devoted to NAFCC that celebrates us, connect us, works for us, and helps us to enhance our professional development.

                In addition to meeting Debbie, I also met another woman named Mary Beauregard, an accredited family child care provider from Michigan in 2015. When I was in San Diego in 2016, I got to see my friends, Mary and Debbie, again. Mary and Debbie shared their stories about attending the National Family Child Care Conference.

                In 2017, I attended the conference in Mobile, Alabama, and it felt like I was going back home to visit my family because I knew I would meet up with my wonderful friends again. Their commitment to the NAFCC is an inspiration to me. We attended the same classes, had wonderful discussions, and shared our stories. We also went to the Tribute to Family Child Care Awards Ceremony where accredited providers are celebrated and attended the red-carpet event. In addition, we met more of the NAFCC staff and many wonderful child care providers.

                Debbie, Mary, and I are friends on Facebook and we always support each other. We are passionate about everything that relates to our work, the NAFCC, and NAFCC Accreditation. I’ve had many wonderful experiences at the National Family Child Care Conferences. It is a wonderful opportunity to get inspiration and knowledge from the best professionals in the field, strong professional support from NAFCC, and to build relationships that will last a lifetime. After returning from the conferences, I always feel inspired and refreshed, full of new ideas and energy.

I want to encourage family child care providers to become accredited, to attend the National Family Child Care Conferences, and to make connections. I’d like to motivate others to expand their professionalism, and to feel more accomplished about their lives! I also want to thank my friend Debbie Grace for approaching me in 2013. It completely changed my life. Every year I look forward to attending the National Family Child Care Conference where I can reunite with my friends, meet wonderful people who are very passionate about family child care, and go to a place where everyone has the same goal: improve family child care and make it thrive!

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*NAFCC does not endorse any product of our advertisers or sponsors. We believe each provider is able to make the best decision of products and curriculum for their program and the children in their care.