Eagle County launches new grant process for early childhood providers | VailDaily.com

Eagle County launches new grant process for early childhood providers

Eagle County has launced a simplified process for local child care providers to access grant funds.
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Eagle County has launched a new, simplified grant funding process for early childhood providers for the 2021 grant cycle.

The new combined funding grant will support licensed child care centers and home providers to grow their businesses, while emphasizing high quality care, health and safety for the children of Eagle County.

The goals of the new combined funding are to:

  • Support child care centers and homes to remain open
  • Support health and safety of all children
  • Support higher wages for child care professionals
  • Support quality care by providing additional coaching support for providers

The grant application for 2021 was released the week of March 29 and will be open until Friday, April 30. To be eligible, programs must be licensed in Eagle County no later than April 15 and serve infants, toddlers, and/or preschool children. Early childhood educators must be registered with the Colorado Shines Professional development Information System.

Unlike previous years, grant applicants only need to fill out one application in order to receive Eagle County funding. All funding will be paid directly to the provider for approved uses.

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“Eagle County is proud to continue to invest in early childhood education and the incredible center administrators and educators that support our children and families,“ Eagle County Commissioner Jeanne McQueeney said. “Safe, quality and accessible child care is essential for our children to grow, parents to work and our economy to function.”

Child care is the work that makes all other work possible; however, the financial challenges of operating high quality centers with trained staff and educators are often overlooked, McQueeney said. Eagle County has administered four Early Childhood Provider Support Programs to provide incentives and support child care providers. In 2020, $1,380,000 was invested through Early Childhood Provider Support Programs and directly into the early childhood community through contracts.

Additionally in 2020, financial programs were implemented to support child care centers, educators and, ultimately, families during the COVID-19 crisis. Since May 2020, $251,800 has been invested, positively impacting access to child care for 293 children. According to one Eagle County center, “Without the funds received from Eagle County we would not have been able to continue operations.”

For more information or for an application, contact Sam Markovitz, Early Childhood Coordinator at sam.markovitz@eaglecounty.us or at 970-401-0722.

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