Childcare Fellowship

care_fund_picStarted in 1989, Harvard and HUCTW created the HUCTW Childcare Fellowship to support working families. It is a need-based fund that helps HUCTW members with the costs of childcare incurred during the calendar year. The 2018 Fellowship helps with childcare costs incurred between January 1, 2018 and December 31, 2018.


In order to apply for the Childcare Fellowship, you must:

  • Have a child or children, aged 0 – 12 (up to the child’s 13th birthday), or be expecting a child, who will be in the care of either (1) a licensed childcare center, family provider, after-school program, summer camp, or vacation camp or (2) an in-home provider with a social security or tax ID number (we are required to have record of this number).
  • Have childcare costs incurred during working/traveling hours.
  • Be a member of the HUCTW Bargaining Unit.

Please note that recently we have also launched a pilot program for children with documented special needs, where we will provide childcare assistance for kids with special needs, ages 13 -18. You must provide documentation of your child’s special needs as a part of your application.

Eligible Childcare

The types of childcare that are eligible include things such as: daycare, nannies or in-home care, after-school programs, daytime summer camps, pre-school, and public kindergarten (not private). However, please note that if you elect to receive your award through a tax-free flexible spending account (FSA), kindergarten of any kind is not an eligible expense. Public kindergarten is only an eligible expense if you receive your award directly through the HUCTW office.

Award Amount

The awards are determined based on your household income and the cost of your care. Childcare fellowships cover only a portion of the childcare costs for each applicant. This portion may vary somewhat from year to year depending on the number of applicants in any given year. All eligible applicants who apply on time will receive an award.

Award Notification

Award letters should be emailed to you approximately one month after the deadline.

Award Delivery Methods

Recipients can choose for their awards to be delivered to them in one of two ways.

  1. You may choose to receive your award through a tax free Flexible Spending Account (FSA) during Open Enrollment. If you choose this method, you may put up to $5,000 in the FSA if your file your taxes as “single” or “married filing jointly”, or up to $2,500 if you are “married, filing separately.” These are the federal limits for FSAs. If your Childcare Fellowship award amount is over your federal limit, you will not be able to choose an FSA as your reimbursement method. If your award is less than your federal limit, you can also put money from your paycheck into the FSA up to your federal limit (if you’re federal limit is $5000, and your award is $3500, you can put up to $1500 of your own money in the FSA). The FSA is managed by an outside vendor. You submit your childcare receipts to this vendor during the course of the year, and the vendor reimburses you with money from your FSA. (Special note: Please also note that HUCTW members based in Washington, DC, are currently not eligible to use this method).
  2. If you do not choose the tax-free FSA option, your award will be delivered to you by the HUCTW office through your paycheck. You will apply for reimbursement for your expenses on a quarterly basis (every three months) using our verification form, and we will deposit the award money in your paycheck. If you choose this option, the award is considered “extra compensation” and will be taxed at approximately 38%, but a portion of the tax withheld can generally be recovered when award recipients submit their tax returns for the year to the IRS. When we send you your award letter, we will also provide information to help you determine which delivery method is best for you, if applicable.

If you would like to compare these in more detail, please see the “Pros and Cons of the Two Delivery Methods” document.

How to Apply

You need to complete two steps in order to apply for the Fellowship:

  • Fill out the Childcare Fellowship Application.
  • Send us the first page of your most recent 1040 federal tax return form. Your child/children must be listed as a dependent on this form (unless your child is not yet born). Those married filing separately, please attach both tax return forms. Example of a 1040 tax form.

Application Deadline

Friday, September 22, 2017

Application Submission

We prefer that you use the online application (below), but if you choose to use the PDF application (also below) you should your application to the HUCTW Office:
Fax: 617-661-9617
Mail: HUCTW Childcare Fellowship, 15 Mt Auburn St, Cambridge, MA 02138


Please apply for the 2018 fellowship using the online application below.

Please contact the Childcare Fellowship coordinators if you have any questions (Email:, Tel: 617-661-8289)