Early Childhood Grants & Resources

Picture of a BabyThe Early Childhood & Prevention Services Section of the Children’s Division administers funding to promote quality and safety in early care and education environments.

The Early Childhood Development, Education, and Care Fund (ECDECF) as stated in Missouri Revised Statute Chapter 313, Section 313.835 was established to provide funding to increase capacity of, and access to, quality early childhood programs for all Missouri families. The funds are distributed through grant programs, certificates to families, and an increase in state child care subsidies for child care programs accredited by a recognized accrediting organization. The funds distributed through grant programs are listed below with information on how to access these programs.

Current Grant Opportunities

2012-2013 Grant Year:

Currently the State of Missouri Children's Division is not offering any grants for Start Up and Expansion in the current fiscal year.

If you would like to be on a notification list for future grant funding, please contact Nancy L. Reid at Nancy.L.Reid@dss.mo.gov   or at 573-522-2316.

If you wish to review evaluations from past awardees, please contact Julie Fortson at Julie.Fortson@dss.mo.gov or at 573-751-7554.

You may review the 2010-2011 Start Up and Expansion Child Care Grant requirements by clicking on the blue link below.  You can review the requirements on line, however to view the previous application, you will need to print the document from the requirements webpage.

Child Care Facility Improvement Grant

2010-2011 Child Care Facility Improvement Grant Request for Application CLOSED effective 3:00 p.m. February 8, 2010.

Missouri Department of Social Services, Children’s Division, Request for Application (RFA) for the improvement of the physical structure of Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services licensed child care facilities was CLOSED effective 3:00 p.m. February 8, 2010.

The Children’s Division has offered awards for Child Care Facility Improvement Grants to the agencies that are listed in the attached letter. Letters have been sent via e-mail to all applicants not offered an award.

Questions regarding the Child Care Grant must be directed to the ITSD–Department of Social Services Help Desk at 1-800-663-2647. Please refer to the Child Care Facility Improvement Grant when contacting the Help Desk. Updated 9-21-2010.

Child Care Facility Improvement Grants are competitive one-time grants for the improvement of the physical structure of Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) licensed child care facilities. Funding for this grant came from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009.

Child care facilities that received this grant must perform improvements to the physical structure of their child care facility with funding from this grant that improve the facility’s ability to maintain licensure. They must also agree to serve children receiving subsidized child care from the Missouri Department of Social Services.

Competitive awards were made to 83 licensed child care facilities throughout the state of Missouri.

Please direct questions regarding the Child Care Facility Improvement Grant to Ask.CD@dss.mo.gov or contact your assigned Program Development Specialist at the phone number or E-mail address provided to you if you are an awardee.

Child Care Start Up and Expansion Program

Competitive awards are made to start up a new childcare program or expand an existing program in order to increase the number of licensed childcare slots for infants and toddlers. Funding is awarded on the basis of the number of licensed slots being added. Awards are targeted to child care providers serving children receiving child care subsidy from the Department of Social Services (DSS).

Programming offered must be appropriate to meet the needs of the children that will be served with funding from this grant, including the physical design of the facility, how the space is utilized, recruitment methods, and the transition of children who age out. Awardees must choose to implement an infant and toddler curriculum that has been approved by the state agency.

Home Visitation Services

The Home Visitation Services program consists of a Stay at Home Parent (SAHP) program, which is funded by ECDECF, and a Child Abuse and Neglect Prevention (CANP) program funded by other state dollars.

To participate in the Stay at Home Parent Program, a family must have a child less than three (3) years of age in the home and a household income under 185% of poverty. Additionally, the parent must meet any one of the following requirements:

  1. Unemployed but may be receiving Temporary Assistance or other income;
  2. Employed 20 hours or less per week;
  3. Participating in an education or job training program;
  4. Living in a shelter or temporary housing;
  5. A teen parent;
  6. Referred by the state agency as being “at risk” for physical, emotional, social, or educational abuse/neglect.

To participate in the Child Abuse and Neglect Prevention Program a family may meet any of the criteria for the Stay at Home Parent program but must be a parent who has a child less than three (3) years of age in the home and must be considered high risk , which includes, but is not limited to:

  1. Families living in poverty.
  2. Teen parent.
  3. Families in homeless or other crisis situations.
  4. Families with children with special needs.

Services are provided via home visits by parent educators, group training sessions targeted at various topics dealing with child development and creating healthy families, and networking opportunities for the families. Families are also provided with books for their child, an array of developmentally appropriate toys they can check out to use with their child, and incentive certificates that they may use to purchase toys, books, safety items, safe cribs, etc. for their child. (The CANP program is not required to provide certificates but may choose to do so). The Stay at Home Parent programs are also required to provide services that address literacy, mathematics, science, physical development, health and safety, and social–emotional levels building on the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education’s Pre–K Early Learning Standards. (The CANP program is not required to address literacy, mathematics, or science but may choose to do so.)

Child Care Accreditation Facilitation Services

Provides accreditation facilitation services to DSS subsidized child care programs in order to increase the quality of child care services for children up to the age they are eligible to enter kindergarten. On July 1, 2007, the Department of Social Services awarded the Child Care Program Accreditation Facilitation Services contract to the Missouri Child Care Resource and Referral Network (MOCCRRN - operating as ChildCareAware ® of Missouri) for all six geographic regions.

Early Head Start Child Care Partnership Program

Used to increase the quality and capacity of childcare for Missouri’s birth to age three population. Early Head Start programs are encouraged to partner with a wide range of providers in the community including both public and private, as well as faith-based, family child care homes, group homes, and centers, to create a variety of quality settings from which parents may choose.

Other Resources: