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UC Davis Health - Sacramento Child Care Resources

Child Care Options:
Health Campus/Sacramento Location

Licensed Child Care Located in the Community

There are a variety of child care settings from which to choose, depending upon your needs. You are best qualified to judge which setting will be most appropriate for your family. These include child care centers, family child care homes, nursery schools, cooperatives, playgroups and recreation programs licensed by the state to serve infants through school-age children.

  • Child Action Child Care referral system Lists of all licensed local childcare (Family Child Care Homes and Child Development Centers) in the Sacramento area. Children with special needs referrals as well. Three quick ways to get assistance:
    • Call their office at (916) 369-0191 to speak with a Child Care Specialist during our normal business hours. Child Action, Inc. has specialists available who speak English, Spanish, and Russian fluently who are able to provide you with a listing of providers as well as useful information to consider while selecting care. (takes less than 1 minute to speak to a local specialist).
    • Email their office at info@childaction.org. To best meet your needs please enter “Child Care Referrals” in the subject line and let them know your address and/or zip code, age of child(ren), and hours care is needed. You will receive a referral list via your email within a day.
    • Access the online referral services by clicking on the "Begin Child Care Search".
    • This is the main resource designated by state licensing for finding openings at licensed small family home centers and large Child Development Centers. 
  • Elementary School Located CDC's: Privately owned and operated for school-age children are available at many area elementary schools. Catalyst Kids offers on-site care before and after school hours, on holidays and during summer. Most elementary school-based Child Development Centers are open during COVID.  Catalyst Kids

Child Care within Your Home


This is care provided by babysitters, nannies and au pairs, who are considered domestic employees exempt from licensing. Background checks for criminal convictions and child abuse are available through Trustline Registry.

  • Bright Horizons Additional Family Supports:  Full subscription available to UC employees free of charge.  This is an online subscription matching system to child care providers as well as discounts and preferred enrollment for employees.  
  • Carebubbles UC Davis has joined with UCSF and UC Berkeley in a Berkeley-based platform which provides a parent-to-parent resource to help UC community members meet their child care needs during the COVID-19 pandemic.  Find other families looking to trade childcare, share tutors, create bubbles and more. Learn more and login using your UC Davis credentials at carebubbles.berkeley.edu
  • Handshake through the UC Davis Internship and Career Center.  Private employers looking for tutors, nannies, babysitters, etc. can create an account in Handshake and post directly on the website free of charge.  Once you post a position, students can apply directly to the position. Instructions on setting up an account can be found at https://www.powtoon.com/c/cn8zrifrotP/1/m. In the posting process you have to post a website, feel free to post the WorkLife site as a placeholder.
  • International Au Pair Association listings

Local Online Resources:

Other Online Options:


Subsidized Child Care Programs


Sacramento Area School Districts 


Reading Resources:


Coming Soon: Childcare Facility at UC Davis Health

To address a shortage of available licensed childcare for local working families, UC Davis Health, SMUD and Sacramento State University have joined forces to create a new child care center in Sacramento. Details and FAQs: 

  • When will the new center be opening?  
  • We are anticipating a fall 2022 opening date for the new Child Development Center (CDC).
  • Where will the center be located?
  • The new CDC will be located at 6011 Folsom Blvd., Sacramento. We are referring to it as the "Folsom Boulevard Child Care Center" until a proper name has been determined. The center will be 17,000 square feet with an additional 15,000 square feet of outdoor space.  The building is owned by University Enterprises, Inc. (UEI), a nonprofit auxiliary organization of Sacramento State that creates and manages programs and services for the college.  SMUD has signed a 15 year lease on the property and SMUD, Sacramento State and UC Davis Health will share costs equally. Tenant improvements began in 2019 and are expected to take approximately 15 months.
  • Who will operate the center?
  • SMUD will conduct a Request for Proposals (RFP) in the near future to establish an operator.  The new CDC will be operated by an independent Child Development Center provider and will be required to be NAEYC (National Association for the Education of Young Children) accredited per operator agreement and partner contract.  NAEYC accreditation is the gold standard in child care and determines teacher/child ratios, safety standards, teacher administration and development, and high-quality educational standards.
  • How many child care slots will be available for UC Davis?
  • UC Davis will have an estimated 69 child slots, 1/3 the total anticipated number of slots (207) for the center shared between SMUD, Sacramento State, and UC Davis.  The slots will be split equally by age range.  All UC Davis affiliate families currently enrolled at the current SMUD owned Lighthouse Center will be guaranteed a space at the new facility.
  • What will be the UC Davis list priority?
  • After existing UC Davis children currently at the closing Lighthouse center are placed, there will be equal priority for UC Davis affiliates. Affiliates are defined as any personnel or student with an active student or employee ID including students, residents, fellows, post-docs, faculty, staff and visiting scholars.  Waitlists will be managed by the operator.  After UC Davis affiliates are served, any remaining slots will be offered to the other partners or the community.
  • What date can interested parties get on the waitlist? 
  • We anticipate the waitlist will be open summer 2021 after an opening date is determined.  Information concerning the list will be made available at this site when determined.
  • Will there be subsidized care?
  • While the overall center will be subsidized by the SMUD/CSUS/UC Davis partnership to enable at-market tuition rates to their affiliates, individual rates will not be subsidized.  Please note that UC Davis students are eligible for the Student Parent Child Care Program and can utilize those funds to assist in their payment to the center.  
  • Will there be back-up care?   
  • Yes, back-up care is included in the planning.
  • What will be the hours of operation?
  • Operating hours have not been determined. However, the particular needs of UC Davis Health staff, students and faculty will be taken into consideration.
  • Where can I find updates and enrollment information?
  • Updates will be posted here at WorkLife as information is established and shared through UC Davis Health internal communication channels.