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Solving Day-Care Dilemmas

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in Human Resources

When they heard rumblings from staff that finding reliable and affordable in-home infant and child care was becoming more difficult all the time, the benefits and work/life pros at the University of Washington in Seattle started working on a solution.

They developed the Nanny Share Network: a free service for university faculty, staff and students.

How it works: Employees fill out a registration form, adding them to a secure Nanny Share database on the university network, where staffers can search for suitable share arrangements.

Employees contact potential matches via e-mail and then e-mail the benefits department when they reach an agreement. The university then provides helpful resources on nanny shares and other child care issues and encourages dialogue among Nanny Share Network "members” through an online discussion board.

A similar benefit at Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill., takes an even simpler approach: The work/life staff collects employees’ information, organizes it on a spreadsheet and distributes it to employees who are interested.

Contacts: Ellen Blizinsky, University of Washington Benefits & Work/Life, (206) 543-6963,; Katie Krauch, Northwestern University Office of Work Life, Child and Family Resources, (312) 503-6631,

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