Welcome Child Care Innovation Fund Grantseekers!

Thank you for considering the Child Care Innovation Fund as a potential partner in the innovative work of your organization or partnership. To help you get to know us better, we recommend you visit our Priorities pages to give you a sense of the focus of our grantmaking. 

While the Child Care Innovation Fund can make grants to many types of organizations, and to partnerships of organizations, we do not make grants to individuals (for example, we do not make grants to a single licensed home child care provider or center). Our resources are small compared to the challenges the child care sector faces, so we are likely to be unable to fund all the requests we receive. 

Have a great idea, but you’re an individual child care provider? Complete this survey and let us know!

Applications for the first round of funding opportunities closed in July 2021. Read more about the first communities to receive Child Care Innovation Fund Awards here. Applications for a second round of funding opportunities through the Child Care Innovation Fund are expected to open in the spring of 2022.

Priorities of the Child Care Innovation Fund

The Child Care Innovation Fund will invest in innovative regional and community pilot projects targeting one or more of the following:

Innovation Fund Priorities Graphic

Learn more about the Priorities that the Child Care Innovation will address, including potential strategies and pilot ideas for applicants by clicking on one below:

  • Priority 1: Advance child care as essential community infrastructure for economic growth and development, business productivity, and school readiness – LEARN MORE 
  • Priority 2: Improve the wages, benefits, on-the-job supports, and professional learning early educators need to help children learn – LEARN MORE 
  • Priority 3: Accelerate the start-up and expansion of licensed child care businesses in areas with more than three children under age five for every licensed child care slot – LEARN MORE 
  • Priority 4: Collaborate on child care solutions with employers to improve the productivity, recruitment, and retention of their working families – LEARN MORE 
  • Priority 5: Increase the economic viability and sustainability of child care businesses – LEARN MORE 

Frequently Asked Questions 

ECIC’s Child Care Innovation Fund grant awards will support organizations or partnerships of organizations to pilot a child care innovation which is designed to benefit an entire region and/or community of the state, not one individual child care business. While ideas for innovation for all child care settings, including centers, home-based and informal care providers, are eligible and encouraged, applications must be from organizations or partnerships of organizations with a goal of benefiting an entire region or community.

ECIC and our partners recognize the critical impact that child care providers make caring for children and families in your community. Although this Innovation Fund is not awarding grants for individual child care programs, here are two resources with current information on what additional grants may be available to help your child care program:

  • Not-for-profit organizations
  • For-profit organizations
  • Governmental unit (e.g., local government, local governmental unit, public or municipal corporation, or unit of a State university system)
  • Partnership of multiple organizations (with an identified lead applicant/fiduciary)

No, the Child Care Innovation Fund is a newly established opportunity.

The Innovation Fund supports three types of grants.  There are suggested funding ranges for each type of grant.

Type of Grant 

Suggested Funding Range

Start Up: New Innovation 

Up to $100,000

Scale Up: Existing Innovation 

Up to $300,000 

Plan for Innovation: Understand the status of region or community relative to one of the Fund’s priorities, identify needed innovation(s), and prepare for implementation 

*A very limited numbers of planning grants may be awarded

Up to $75,000

The next application round is expected to open in the fall of 2021.

Please email grants@ecic4kids.org and schedule a virtual office consultation, or with any questions you might have. We are ready to support you!