Family Child Care Network Grantee Announcement


ECIC Child Care Innovation Fund
July 12, 2023

LANSING, MI — The Early Childhood Investment Corporation’s Child Care
Innovation Fund is excited to announce the recipients of the Family Child Care
Networks (FCCN) pilot grants, a groundbreaking initiative that is part of Caring for MI
Future. These grants will support nine outstanding Hubs across our state who will
co-lead with home-based child care providers to form Family Child Care Networks in
a one-year pilot program, aiming to improve the funding, policy, and regulatory
environment for home-based child care businesses. We thank these awardees for
their dedication and leadership to ensuring all young children and their families in
Michigan thrive.

This grant opportunity is funded by the $12.9 million in federal American Rescue Plan
Act funding, awarded by the Michigan Department of Education (MDE) as part of
the Caring for MI Future initiative. Caring for MI Future is a $100 million investment
that will help more Michigan families find quality, affordable child care in their
community by opening 1,000 new, or expanded, child care programs by the end of

ECIC’s Child Care Innovation fund has developed and implemented this grant in
collaboration with Home Grown, a national collaborative of philanthropic leaders
committed to improving the quality and access to home-based child care.
Nine organizations across Michigan will receive $3,650,000 to connect and support
home-based child care programs in the delivery of essential services in partnership
with the Child Care Innovation fund. These organizations will act as Network Hubs,
providing technical assistance, educational and engagement opportunities with
decision-makers and policymakers, and connections to additional local and state
resources for child care providers. Grantees include:

Arbor Circle (awarded $401,670 to support the work of 4 Family Child Care
Bethany Christian Services of Michigan (awarded $400,000 to support the
work of 2 Family Child Care Networks, focused on refugee providers)
Child Care Network (awarded $800,000 to support the work of 4 Family Child
Care Networks, including 1 network focused on Arab American providers)
Empowered Community Outreach Services (awarded $400,000 to support
the work of 2 Family Child Care Networks)
First Steps Kent (awarded $200,000 to support the work of 1 Family Child
Care Network)
Great Start to Quality – Kent ISD (awarded $200,000 to support the work of 1
Family Child Care Network, focused on Spanish speaking providers)
Southwest Child Care Resource & Referral (awarded $572,295 to support the
work of 4 Family Child Care Networks)
United Way Northwest Michigan (awarded 476,035 to support the work of 3
Family Child Care Networks)
Vibrant Futures (awarded $200,000 to support the work of 1 Family Child Care

“ECIC’s Child Care Innovation Fund is grateful for the opportunity to partner with
these nine organizations that have an intentional focus on home-based child care as
a distinct, essential, and valued early care and education setting for children and
families,” said Joan Blough, Senior Director, Child Care Innovation Fund at ECIC. “We
look forward working with them as they include home-based child care providers as
equal decision-making partners in FCCN governance, operations, and

“First Steps Kent is grateful for this opportunity from ECIC to support the work being
done by the Mainspring Early Care Alliance in Kent County,” said Kristen Sobolewski,
Project Director, First Steps Kent. “With this Family Child Care Network funding,
licensed in-home child care business owners will be able to deepen peer and
educator connections, develop a long-term professional relationship with
Mainspring staff, and have increased access to direct, comprehensive support
focused on their unique professional and business needs.”

(View PDF of grantee list)

Created in 2005 to serve as a statewide leader in early childhood, ECIC collaborates
to increase public and private investment in the earliest years, elevate issues
affecting young children and their families, and continuously improve Michigan’s
comprehensive early childhood system. Our aim is to create a future where all young
children in Michigan and their families thrive. To learn more about ECIC and the
Child Care Innovation Fund, please visit