Family and Community Resources

This page serves to connect Durham County community members with local and national organizations primarily focused on early childhood and family wellness. Below you will find resources for pre-K applications in Durham, family mental health, parenting, developmental concerns, literacy support and more!

If you would like for your organization or program to be added to our list, please contact us here with your program name, services offered and a link to your website.

Child Care Needs

Below, you will find application materials for Durham's Universal PreK Application, resources to assist your family in finding child care, and more.


Durham's Universal PreK Application Materials


Finding and Paying for Child Care

"Choosing the best child care for your child can be a difficult decision – there are so many things to consider. Child Care Referral Central can help make your decision easier. When you call Child Care Referral Central, a child care referral counselor will provide you information about the types of child care in your community, the features of quality child care, and referrals to child care programs that can meet your needs and the needs of your child."

"The mission of DSS Child Care is to assist families living in Durham County with information and access to child care services."

"Durham Early Head Start (DEHS) is a federally-funded, free, and comprehensive child development and family support program for low-income expectant women and families with infants and toddlers age birth to 3. Families participate through two program models: intensive home visiting and full day high-quality center-based child care. Currently, DEHS serves 120 children through center-based care and 36 children through home visiting, for a total enrollment of 156."

"Our mission: To ensure every child in Durham enters school ready to succeed, we lead community strategies for children birth to 5 and their families that promote healthy development and learning and enhance access to high quality care"

Child and Family Health

Child and family health is very important to everyone in the early childhood education community. Below are some resources for physical health, mental health, and potential developmental concerns.


Child and Family Physical Health

"CCFH provides a wide range services for families of all kinds – from general support for first-time parents to outpatient treatment for serious mental health or behavioral concerns. With expertise across multiple disciplines, our professionals assess each family’s unique needs and deliver compassionate care grounded in clinical research."

"Duke’s Family Studies Program and Clinic, a specialty clinic in Duke Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, specializes in the most up-to-date, state-of-the-art treatment approaches. Our team of psychiatrists, psychologists, and social workers — expertly trained in family treatment methods — provide therapy and skillful care."

"Care Coordination for Children (CC4C) is a new program for eligible children from birth to age 5.  CC4C works to improve the overall health of young children.  If your child qualifies for this program, your family can receive services offered by CC4C. CC4C focuses on family strengths and concerns.  CC4C Care Managers are nurses and social workers who will help identify programs, services, and resources that meet your family’s needs through home visits, doctor visits, telephone calls, and other personal contacts. Your Care Manager will serve as a link between you and your child’s doctor or nurse.  He or she will also help you link with other community resources and offer information and support."

"The North Carolina Health Choice (NCHC) Health Insurance Program for Children is a comprehensive health coverage program for low-income children. If you do not qualify for Medicaid, but cannot to afford private or employer-sponsored health insurance, your children may qualify for NCHC."

"Durham Parks and Recreation (DPR) provides opportunities for the Durham community to Play More: Connecting our whole community to wellness, the outdoors, and lifelong learning. Guided by the City’s Strategic Plan, we strive to help residents discover, explore and enjoy life through creative and challenging recreational choices that contribute to their physical, emotional and social health."

Child and Family Mental Health

"Duke Pediatric Neuropsychology provides comprehensive neuropsychological and psychosocial evaluations for children with chronic illnesses."

"CCFH provides a wide range services for families of all kinds – from general support for first-time parents to outpatient treatment for serious mental health or behavioral concerns. With expertise across multiple disciplines, our professionals assess each family’s unique needs and deliver compassionate care grounded in clinical research."

"This resource from the Mental Health Partners offers advice on helping your children manage their emotions and supporting them during challenging behaviors."

"As the COVID-19 crisis continues to unfold, many parents are wondering how to talk to children about the impacts of the virus in a way that will be reassuring and not make kids more worried than they already may be. Here is some advice from the experts at the Child Mind Institute."

"Text HOME to 741741 from anywhere in the United States, anytime. Crisis Text Line is here for any crisis. A live, trained Crisis Counselor receives the text and responds, all from our secure online platform. The volunteer Crisis Counselor will help you move from a hot moment to a cool moment."

"This is a confusing and overwhelming time for many. And if you’re one of the 1 in 4 people who have already been struggling with a mental health disorder, it can be even harder. We, and the wider mental health community, are here for you. We know that the internet can be an overwhelming place right now, and it can be tough to find the support you need. So the team at Shine, in partnership with Mental Health America, has vetted and compiled a wealth of research-backed and helpful tools for you—articles, meditations, access to mental health experts, anxiety screenings, and more. Think of Care For Your Coronavirus Anxiety as your mental health toolkit during this time."

"El Futuro is a one-of-a-kind place where Spanish-speaking immigrants can access culturally-responsive mental health services. We are a community-based program, founded as a volunteer effort in 2001 to meet the otherwise unmet need for bilingual mental health services for the growing Latino immigrant community in North Carolina."

This site has a list of information about COVID-19, coping mechanisms, and other resources to help you and your family through the COVID-19 outbreak.

Developmental Needs and Concerns

"Durham CDSA provides free developmental evaluations and early intervention services on a sliding fee scale for children at risk for developmental delays or diagnosed with special needs. No child will be denied services because of inability to pay. CDSA provides Early Intervention services to children ages birth to 3 years old (including Evaluations, Service Coordination and Transition to Preschool services). CDSA also provides evaluations to children ages 3 to 5."

"The Duke ADHD Clinic offers comprehensive, state-of-the-art assessments and evidence-based treatments for children, adolescents, and adults with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)."

"The Duke Autism Clinic provides comprehensive assessment, diagnosis, treatment, ongoing behavioral and medication consultation for children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorder."

The Duke Children's Evaluation Center offers child/adolescent mental health assessments, behavioral health, Autism services and Fragile X syndrome supports.

"[This] department offers a full continuum of services to students meeting eligibility criteria. We are committed to ensuring that every student has access to the general curriculum and an opportunity to learn that is equal to that of non-disabled students. Specially designed, research-based instruction is provided in the least restrictive environment to promote student development. We are dedicated to building authentic parent and community relationships!"

"Students who receive special education services qualify in one or more of the 14 areas of eligibility:

Autism, Deaf-blindness, Deafness, Developmental Delay, Emotional Disability, Hearing Impairment, Intellectual Disability, Multiple Disabilities, Orthopedic Impairment, Other Health Impairment, Specific Learning Disability, Speech or Language Impairment, Traumatic Brain Injury, or Visual Impairment, including Blindness"

"Duke Speech Pathology and Audiology Clinic 1I provides individualized speech, language, hearing, cognitive, swallowing, and communication services to adults and children. Our providers are equipped with the specialized training and expertise necessary to provide care that is tailored to each person’s individual needs."

"The Birth Injury Justice Center was created as a helpful resource focused on victims of birth injuries and their families. Our mission is to provide legal information and guidance and serve all families with disabilities caused by physical birth injuries."

COVID-19 Resources

As we continue to progress through the COVID-19 outbreak, we want to ensure you have access to the most updated and informative information. When in doubt, please visit the CDC's website, Durham County's official policies, and remember your 3 W's.

Wear a cloth covering over your nose and mouth.

Wait 6 feet apart. Avoid close contact.

Wash your hands or use hand sanitizer.

Important update from the North Carolina Department of Revenue:

The NC Department of Revenue just released an online application for the Extra Credit Grant Program to help North Carolina families with virtual schooling and child care. This $335 dollar grant is tied to the Coronavirus Relief Act 3.0 that was just passed by the General Assembly. Apply by October 15, 2020. For more information and to see if your family qualifies for the Extra Credit Grant from NC DOR, click the button below.

Family Resources

This is a story by Chandra Michiko Ghosh Ippen and Melissa Brymer, illustrated by Erich Ippen, Jr.: This book contains a story about two childhood friends social distancing and adjusting to life during the COVID-19 pandemic. The pdf includes the story, parent discussion guides, coloring pages and family activities.

"In this episode of our explainer series, we have a simple video to help explain to children why we need to wear masks during the COVID-19 restrictions. For more resources, visit"

"A short and simple video animation explaining why children should stay at home during these weeks of the coronavirus outbreak (SARS-CoV-2)."

Information and Local Resources

"On this map you’ll find food sites including no-cost meal sites, food pantries, grocery stores, farmers markets and more. Contact information, location and hours should be listed for each site."

"En este mapa encontrará sitios de alimentos, incluyendo sitios de comidas sin costo, despensas de alimentos, supermercados, mercados de agricultores y más. La información de contacto, la ubicación y las horas de servicios se deben enumerar para cada sitio."

"As of Thursday, July 9 at 5 p.m., the 9th Amendment to Durham’s Safer-at-Home Order is in effect until rescinded. While mostly adopting Governor Roy Cooper’s statewide Executive Order 147, there are some more stringent requirements for Durham residents and visitors."

This site provides all the information you need to contact your government officials about your child care concerns related to COVID-19.

On Friday, May 22, 2020, at 5 p.m., Durham’s updated Stay-at-Home Orders are in effect until rescinded. While mostly adopting Governor Roy Cooper’s statewide Executive Order 141, there are some more stringent requirements for Durham residents and visitors. Always refer to for the latest information.

Food Security

If you and your family are looking for free or affordable meals or groceries, view the resources below.


Direct Food Services

"If you are in need of food, please use the search boxes below to find an agency near you. Please note that partner agency days and hours of operation are subject to change and may vary from what appears in the search results. We recommend contacting an agency before you visit to confirm its hours and days of operation and the availability of food on that day."

"With schools out due to COVID-19, there are active locations across our service area providing free grab-and-go meals for children. We will be updating the list as often as needed."

Click here for Durham-specific sites:

"For families in crisis, there is simply no substitute for fresh, healthy, FREE food available for use in one's own home.  Our Mobile Markets listed here are open to anyone in need of food."

"COVID-19 Update: Committed to providing emergency food through community partners to as many hungry neighbors as possible while exercising an abundance of caution for the health and safety of their team members, partners, and those they serve. For the most up-to-date information, please visit our In the News section of the website."

"On this map you’ll find food sites including no-cost meal sites, food pantries, grocery stores, farmers markets and more. Contact information, location and hours should be listed for each site. This information is changing often so please contact the site whenever possible before visiting."

Meals on Wheels of Durham delivers a nutritious meal, a safety check and a smile that serves as a lifeline to seniors of limited mobility. Our services are available to any resident of Durham County who is homebound as the result of age, disability, or illness.

"On this map you’ll find food sites including no-cost meal sites, food pantries, grocery stores, farmers markets and more. Contact information, location and hours should be listed for each site."

"En este mapa encontrará sitios de alimentos, incluyendo sitios de comidas sin costo, despensas de alimentos, supermercados, mercados de agricultores y más. La información de contacto, la ubicación y las horas de servicios se deben enumerar para cada sitio."

Volunteer Opportunities

"This is a community-based team representing organizations in Durham County that is focused on reducing food insecurity issues for citizens in Durham County related to the COVID-19 crisis."

View the efforts from the DPS Foundation that support families during COVID-19. Some efforts have volunteer opportunities for community members.

"PORCH is built around the very simple idea of a neighborhood food drive. Here’s how it works, in three easy steps:

  1. Once a month, on a designated day, residents place a food donation of individual sized-portions on their front porch.
  2. A volunteer neighborhood coordinator goes porch to porch and picks up the food donations.
  3. The donated food is transported by car to The Child Food Hub where it is sorted, packed, and readied for delivery by volunteers. Inter-Faith Food Shuttle schedules these shifts."

Home Learning Resources

For a comprehensive list of home learning resources, visit our Home Learning page here.


Housing, Shelter and Homelessness

Below are resources to help families in need of temporary housing or shelter, and those in need to rental assistance during COVID-19.


View Resources

"Working together, we help provide families with children a stable, safe and loving environment while they are in the temporary crisis of homelessness. FMF now offers after school tutoring, educational enrichment programming, and early interventions to children residing in our shelter as part of a two-generation approach that aims to break the cycle of poverty in our community."

"DCRC’s emergency shelter gives women and children a safe and supportive environment where they can begin to recover from the effects of domestic violence. The shelter offers case management and counseling, as well as assistance with legal, housing, and employment needs. Spanish-speaking staff is available."

Durham County Government offers rental assistance as one of their crisis services. Click the link above to view the eligibility criteria for rental assistance and other crisis services.


LGBTQ+ Resources

These organizations offer resources for LGBTQ+ youth in Durham and for teachers to incorporate in schools.


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"The LGBTQ Center of Durham commits to centering the experiences of those who are the most marginalized among us. With a history of providing services supplementing this commitment, we continue to strive to set an example for other communities and organizations to prioritize lifting our family up. With the Host Home Program, LGBTQ+ Youth Center, a re-centered Pride, and other gender inclusive support programs, we are aligned with the promise of serving QTPOC. Our services are open to the entire community and seek to make room for all people."

"The LGBTQ Center of Durham proposal was for the creation of an LGBTQ+ Youth Center that will allow the current center to expand its mission to intentionally focus on the City of Durham’s LGBTQ+ youth population. This center will function as the singular physical hub of LGBTQ+ youth resources that currently scatter the city and increase their reach. The space will value and honor youth leadership and wisdom while focusing on enhancing individual agency and empowerment. It will also feature targeted programming and educational events designed to support youth in the development of positive self-concept, resiliency, building social and vocational skills, and leadership skills."

"Educating Educators:

SSNC believes that educating other educators about LGBTQ+ issues and inclusive learning environments is one of the best ways to make schools welcoming for all students. Whether you are an individual educator, a school administrator, or a district superintendent, we'd love to talk with you about how SSNC can help you support K12 students."

"Linking you to Resources:

SSNC wants to help anyone connected to a K-12 NC school--students, parents, teachers, counselors, administrators, school board members, etc--find the resources or support they need to feel safe or help others feel safe in school. If we can't help you, we'll find someone who will. Please reach out, we are happy to help in any way that we can!"


These organizations offer resources for literacy and books for families in Durham.


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  • Durham County Library

Library Take Out - "Durham County Library is happy to offer Library Take-Out! as the second phase of our reopening. You can place holds on up to 5 items at a time, and when you're notified that they are ready, make a reservation to come pick them up at the library. You can make a reservation up to 14 days in advance. If no appointments are available, check back the next day as each day another day is opened. Same-day reservations are not available. "

Virtual Events Calendar 

Online Collections

Library Fine Cancellation - "Durham County Library is now fine free. Effective July 1, 2020, library users will no longer be charged fines for overdue materials. This is an important step in ensuring that all residents of Durham County have access to the library’s resources."

"Parents, we are here for you – with books! We know that access to books is fundamental to keeping learning alive for every child – for maintaining and improving reading skills, for finding comfort in a bedtime story, for fueling imaginations during this longer-than-ever time away from school.  As part of our Rapid Response Summer Strategy, we will be providing contactless book pickups throughout the summer in two ways: at Durham Public Schools meal sites and at our Rapid Response Center in Durham."

Parenting and Family Support

These resources and organizations can help families find support groups, meet other families, connect with professionals that can assist in child raising and development, and more.


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"Exchange Family Center has been working for 26 years to better the live’s of children in Durham and to keep families together. We use a multi-prong approach — providing support and training for families, caregivers and childcare professionals, as well as working to raise community awareness. Anyone and everyone can play a part in creating safe and responsive environments for children."

"Healthy Families Durham (HFD) offers early childhood intervention services through an intensive home-visiting program. The program is designed to improve parent-child interaction and child social-emotional well-being, promote parenting skills, enhance child health and development, increase school readiness, support family self-sufficiency, and reduce risk for child maltreatment. We believe that parenting is both a rewarding and a difficult job. HFD seeks to support families and relieve some of the stress of being a parent, using approaches that focus on family strengths and cultural sensitivity. Parents are a baby’s first and most important teachers. Knowing what to expect at each age and stage makes parenting fun and helps children grow to their full potential."

"EDCI’s mission is to create a pipeline of high-quality services from birth through high school graduation for children and families living in a 120-block area of East Durham."

"Welcome Baby is committed to help strengthen families with young children, ages 0-5, living in Durham County. That help includes phone support, developmental newsletters, parenting classes and many other resources."

This is a disaster response toolkit created by one of CCSA's HSB Specialists. This toolkit has resources for a variety of disasters and tips on helping children cope and recover from disasters.

On this website, you will find a collection of Durham County services. For example, Parenting Education, Family Support Groups, Children's Rights Groups, Family Counseling, and more.

"Developed by educational researchers, Ready4K is an evidence-based family engagement curriculum delivered via text messages. Each week, parents and caregivers receive fun facts and easy tips on how to promote their children’s development by building on existing family routines – like pointing out letters on the cereal box at breakfast, counting the number of steps as you walk to the car or bus, or making feeling faces in the mirror after you brush your teeth. In a series of randomized controlled trials, this approach has been shown to increase child development by 2 to 3 months over the course of a school year."

"During the first three years of life, emotionally nourishing relationships lay the foundation for lifelong health and well-being. By supporting the caring adults who touch the lives of infants and toddlers, we hope to maximize our long-term impact in ensuring all infants and toddlers have a bright future."

Race and Ethnic Identity in Early Childhood Education

Durham PreK and the Pre-K Partners are committed to continuously learning how to foster anti-racist classrooms for all children and families. We are developing a webpage specific to racial equity in early childhood education, and will post that resource and commitment below when it is available. We have listed a few of the resources we plan to include on the Racial Equity page below as a starting point for this internal and community-based work.


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"For more than 40 years, the National Black Child Development Institute (NBCDI) has been at the forefront of engaging leaders, policymakers, professionals, and parents around critical and timely issues that directly impact Black children and their families. We are a trusted partner in delivering culturally relevant resources that respond to the unique strengths and needs of Black children around issues including early childhood education, health, child welfare, literacy, and family engagement. With the support of our Affiliate network in communities across the country, we are committed to our mission “to improve and advance the quality of life for Black children and their families through education and advocacy.”

"Child care and early education policies are shaped by a history of systemic and structural racism. This has created major racial disparities in children’s access to quality child care that meets their cultural and linguistic needs and enables their parents to work. Early care and education workers are overwhelmingly in low-quality jobs with inadequate compensation. And workers of color are often relegated to the lowest-paid positions.

Equity Starts Early: Addressing Racial Inequities in Child Care and Early Education Policy explores these critical racial equity issues in major early childhood programs, policies, and systems, including CCDBG, Head Start, and state pre-kindergarten programs."

"The Anti-Racism Community Fund commits to fighting for justice through action, community empowerment, and the dismantling of systems that perpetuate racism and keep our neighbors in poverty. That can only happen by educating community members on important issues, mobilizing residents to create community-level solutions, and supporting local leaders to create systemic change."

"The Anti-Racism Community Fund will invest in:

1. Local leaders of color to build resource capacity and create environments where Triangle-area residents hold the power needed to create community-level change

2. Nonprofits with systemic approaches to dismantling racist structures in housing, food, health, workforce, or education All funding decisions will be made by a committee of community leaders with proven experience with anti-racism work. Click here for more information."

  • Child Care Aware Webinar Series

Early Childhood experts talk about how to improve the early childhood education system to provide equal access to tools and opportunities. This three-episode webinar series will feature "honest dialogue about the state of our country, [Child Care Aware of America's] position, mental health and health trauma that exists as a result of systemic racism and how we create an equitable system to support providers, children and families."

Episode 1

Episode 2

Episode 3

Teaching Tolerance offers hundreds or free lesson plans, professional development opportunities, research and more to assist teachers in teaching topics like race, injustice, equity, bullying and more.

PBS offers this resource guide for parents to use as they plan to talk to their children about race.

A committee of local organizations working together with the community to improve the state of physical, mental and social health of Durham's community. Their website provides resources for advancing health equity, recent health data, and connections to local services for community members.

Resources for Families that Prefer Services in Spanish or Other Languages

Some multilingual resources are dispersed throughout the other resource categories, but more can be found below for families that prefer information in Spanish or other languages.


View Resources

What You Need to Know about COVID-19 (Spanish)

What to Do if You Have COVID-19

COVID-19 Videos in ASL and with Captions 

COVID-19 Hearing Loss Resources

COVID-19 Resources - Indigenous Languages

  • NC Justice Center

Immigrant Access to Health Care & Benefits in Time of Emergency

Information for workers affected by COVID-19

Existe una necesidad creciente de asistencia financiera para los residentes afectados por inmigración detención y deportación en los condados de Durham, Wake y Orange. Mientras que hay programas enfocados en las necesidades de poblaciones esenciales en nuestras comunidades, algunos vecinos están siendo dejados a un lado por parte de nuestras redes de apoyo existentes. 

El Fondo Solidario de los Inmigrantes de CWS es un recurso de emergencia para los individuos afectados por estas situaciones.


There is a growing need in Durham, Wake and Orange counties for financial assistance for residents affected by immigration detention and deportation. While there are programs that address the needs of many essential populations in our communities, some neighbors are being left out of our existing support networks.

CWS’s Immigrant Solidarity Fund is an emergency assistance resource for individuals affected by these situations.