Many SIAM conferences offer support for attendees with small children. To find out if your next conference offers child care grants, click the “Child Care” link in the sidebar of the conference’s webpage. For example, here’s the Child Care link for the upcoming NWCS16 in Philadelphia: http://www.siam.org/meetings/nwcs16/childcare.php.
I received the Child Care Grant through SIAM for the 2015 SIAM CSE conference in Salt Lake City, UT. At the time, my son was 7 months old and, while nibbling on solids, he was still nursing and not on formula. Logistics dictated that he would have to start formula if I were to attend the whole conference. This grant allowed me to fly my husband and son (children under 2 fly for free) out with me so that I could enjoy the entirety of the conference without having to choose to start supplementing my son’s diet with formula.
My wife and I are both in the same field of applied math. Quite often with conferences it is the case that only one of us can go while the other stays home with the kids. When the SIAM Annual Meeting was in San Diego, we were able to bring the kids with us, have a sitter for them during the day, and then spend time with them in the evenings. Since both of us are mid-career (tenured associate professors), we feel it is crucial to try to attend key conferences and make the most out of the conference in terms of networking and attending sessions. It is great that SIAM offers this resource that helps us strike a balance between family and career. It shows that they understand the diversity of their members and try to help them succeed.