* This site is privately owned and is not affiliated or endorsed by the Social Security Administration or any other government agency.

Child Development Centers


Child Development Centers (CDCs) are facilities that provide childcare services for military families, including veterans. These centers offer a safe and nurturing environment, focusing on the educational, social, emotional, and physical development of children. CDCs cater to children aged 6 weeks to 12 years old and are commonly located on or near military installations.

Key Takeaways

  1. Child Development Centers (CDCs) provide on-site child care services for eligible veterans and their families, offering a safe and nurturing environment where children can learn, grow, and develop.
  2. CDCs offer a range of programs, such as full-time, part-time, and hourly child care, as well as before and after school care, catering to the varied needs of the families they serve. They often incorporate a curriculum that focuses on enhancing the cognitive, emotional, social, and physical development of the children.
  3. Eligibility for utilizing VA CDCs typically extends to active duty, reserve, and National Guard members, DoD civilian employees, and in some cases, contractors and veterans seeking VA healthcare services. It’s important to check specific eligibility requirements and availability with your local VA facility.


Child Development Centers (CDCs) are an essential aspect of VA benefits as they provide crucial support and resources for veterans and their families.

These centers offer affordable, high-quality childcare services for eligible military and veteran families, enabling parents to have peace of mind while they work, attend school, or receive medical care.

Additionally, CDCs are dedicated to promoting the healthy development of children through age-appropriate activities, nurturing environments, and well-trained professionals.

By addressing the childcare needs of veterans, the VA helps to alleviate financial and emotional stress, allowing service members to focus on their personal and professional growth.

Ultimately, CDCs play a vital role in the overall well-being and success of the veteran community.


Child Development Centers (CDCs) serve a crucial role in supporting military families by providing them access to high-quality early childhood education and care facilities specifically designed for the unique needs of their children. The primary purpose of these centers is to not only offer a safe, nurturing and stimulating environment for children while their parents serve their country, but also to contribute to the overall well-being and development of the military community.

CDCs are often situated on military installations and managed by the Department of Defense (DoD) and other affiliated agencies, offering a wide range of programs and services tailored to address the distinctive challenges faced by military families, such as extended work hours, deployments, and frequent relocations. The services offered at Child Development Centers encompass a comprehensive array of age-appropriate activities that focus on the cognitive, emotional, social and physical development of children spanning from infants to pre-kindergarten age.

These programs are designed in compliance with the highest quality standards, furnished by qualified and trained staff, and employ cutting-edge educational approaches to foster children’s growth and learning. Furthermore, in order to alleviate the financial burdens faced by military families, the cost of utilizing CDCs is determined on a sliding scale based on total household income.

By offering a secure and supportive space coupled with high-quality, affordable care, Child Development Centers play a vital role in cultivating resilience, stability, and a sense of continuity for both children and their families, helping them cope with the unique demands of military life.

Examples of Child Development Centers

Child Development Centers (CDCs) are facilities that provide childcare services, often on military installations or in close proximity to them. These centers offer full and part-time childcare programs for the children of active-duty military personnel, Department of Defense civilians, and veterans. Child Development Centers often focus on early childhood education and development, offering age-appropriate activities and learning opportunities.

Fort Bragg Child Development Centers (North Carolina)Fort Bragg, an Army installation in North Carolina, has several Child Development Centers on base. These centers provide childcare services to military families stationed here, including the children of veterans. Programs are available for children aged six weeks to five years, with services ranging from full-time, part-time, and hourly care, supporting families with various schedules and needs.

Joint Base Lewis-McChord Child and Youth Services (Washington) Joint Base Lewis-McChord (JBLM) in Washington state offers multiple Child Development Centers and School Age Centers through their Child and Youth Services program. Children of military personnel and veterans, aged six weeks to twelve years, can participate in the various childcare and recreation programs available. JBLM’s CDCs focus on providing high-quality early childhood education, as well as before-and-after school programs for school-age children.

Naval Station Norfolk Child Development Centers (Virginia)Naval Station Norfolk is home to several Child Development Centers for children of Navy personnel, DoD civilians, and veterans. These centers cater to children aged six weeks to five years, offering full-time and part-time care options. Many centers on base also provide preschool programs to prepare children for kindergarten and are accredited through the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC).Each of these Child Development Centers aims to provide veteran family members with quality childcare services, utilizing a curriculum that focuses on social, emotional, cognitive, and physical development.

FAQ – Child Development Centers

1. What is a Child Development Center?

A Child Development Center (CDC) is a facility that provides care, education, and development services to children of military and VA eligible families. CDCs offer a safe and nurturing environment with age-appropriate activities to promote the cognitive, physical, social, and emotional growth of children.

2. Who is eligible for Child Development Centers?

Child Development Centers are available to children of active-duty service members, DoD civilian employees, reservists on active duty or during training, and eligible VA benefit recipients. Eligibility may vary depending on the specific CDC and the availability of spots.

3. What age range do Child Development Centers cater to?

Child Development Centers typically serve children from 6 weeks to 12 years of age. The age groups are often divided into different classrooms or areas within the facility, such as infants, toddlers, preschoolers, and school-age children.

4. What are the hours of operation for Child Development Centers?

The hours of operation for Child Development Centers vary depending on the individual center. Most CDCs provide services Monday through Friday, while some may open earlier or close later to accommodate the schedules of military and VA families. It is best to contact your local CDC for their specific hours of operation.

5. How can I find a Child Development Center near me?

To find a Child Development Center near you, visit the MilitaryChildCare.com website where you can search for CDCs by location, service branch, and child’s age. Be sure to contact the CDC directly to confirm program availability and eligibility requirements.

6. What is the cost of attending a Child Development Center?

The cost of attending a Child Development Center varies depending on the specific facility and your eligibility. Fees are typically based on a sliding scale according to total family income. Contact your local CDC for fee information and any financial assistance options that may be available.

7. Are Child Development Centers accredited?

Many Child Development Centers are accredited by national organizations such as the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) or the Council on Accreditation (COA). Accreditation ensures that a CDC meets high standards of quality, safety, and professionalism in childcare and early education.

Related VA Benefit Terms

  • Early Childhood Education
  • Special Needs Programs
  • Childcare Subsidies
  • After School Care
  • Parenting Support Services

Sources for More Information