Funding Opportunity: Family, Friend and Neighbor Caregiver Supports

Funding Overview

Many families choose and rely on extended family, friends or neighbors to provide care for their young children (ages birth through eight) while parents are at work. Family, friend and neighbor (FFN) care providers spend a substantial amount of time with children and play a critical role in supporting children’s health and early development.

As essential workers continue to return to work and an increasing number of licensed child care sites close, FFN caregivers are being called upon to support families in providing safe and nurturing environments for children.

At the Foundation, we understand the urgency of providing Coloradans – of every age – with the resources they need to support mental and social well-being. Children need stable, responsive and trusting relationships with those that love them and caring adults that support their social-emotional development. Regardless of child care setting, care providers should have access to resources and supports that enable them to build strong, stable, responsive relationships that are at the heart of building a strong foundation for children’s healthy development and well-being.

This funding opportunity will support FFN caregivers to build their networks, increase access to information and resources and provide professional development in support of building stable, responsive relationships with children in their care. Eligible applicants include community-based organizations, community-based coalitions or public agencies that work with FFN caregivers serving Coloradans living on low income and those historically experiencing less power and privilege. Applicants are eligible to apply for up to two years of support.

Proposed projects must reflect the Foundation’s cornerstones. These outline who we serve, how our work is informed and our intent to create health equity.

Have questions? We’re here to talk through your ideas and strongly encourage you to connect with us before applying for funding. If you don’t already work with a program officer, please reach out to us by email or by phone at 303-953-3600, and be sure to note the county you work in and area of interest.

Si necesita acceder la solicitud de fondos en español, por favor contáctenos a grants@coloradohealth.org

Focus Area
Nurture Healthy Minds

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Have questions? Contact your Program Officer for more information.

Criteria

To be considered for funding, organizations must meet the following criteria: 

  • Align with the Foundation’s cornerstones and promote conditions for healthy social-emotional development and resilience of young children
  • Establish the ability to outreach and engage the family, friend and neighbor caregiver population and utilize strong social and community networks
  • Ensure capacity to offer culturally relevant program infrastructure and services
  • Include family, friend and neighbor caregivers and/or families who serve in advisory and/or co-designer roles

The Foundation is looking to support efforts that address one or more of the following:

  1. Grow an understanding of healthy child social-emotional development and culturally relevant strategies while children are in their care
  2. Have improved access to culturally relevant resources in their communities to support their work and the families they serve
  3. Establish practices to foster strong partnerships with parents of the children that are in their care
  4. Enhance family, friend and neighbor caregiver ability to manage stress and support their own mental well-being

Preference will be given to programs/projects that:

  • Focus on building the strength of caregivers as a way to improve the social-emotional development of children.
  • Consider family, friend and neighbor caregiver well-being, including understanding and coping with stress.
  • Acknowledge and build on the strengths of families and caregivers.
  • Consider how trauma may impact families and caregivers and embody strategies that are sensitive to the hard realities and resiliency present in the care setting.
  • Are based on input from caregivers, available information about local needs and lessons about what works in other places with similar characteristics.
  • Consider multiple ways to reach caregivers to overcome barriers (e.g. online, training during nights and/or weekends, in-home supports, etc.)

Examples

Examples of organizations considered for funding:

  • Community-based nonprofits
  • Community colleges
  • Community-based coalitions
  • Early childhood councils
  • Family resource centers
  • Local institutions who are viewed by community as trusted partners
  • Public libraries

Examples of efforts we hope to support:

  • Knowledge of healthy childhood development, including strategies to advance social-emotional development of young children
  • Supporting family, friend and neighbor caregivers’ understanding of trauma and mental health, and bolstering their own well-being
  • Raising awareness of and connections to available resources to support caregivers and families receiving child care
  • Practices to support positive relationships with families and sustainable care delivery

Examples of activities we hope to support:

  • Planning and outreach efforts to grow understanding of local family, friend and neighbor capacity and needs
  • Established early childhood training programs made available to family, friend and neighbor caregivers
  • Strategies that eliminate geographic barriers or barriers to in-person connections as a result of COVID19 
  • Efforts to leverage existing infrastructure to extend to family, friend and neighbor caregivers
  • Home visitation programs for family, friend and neighbor homes (Virtual or in person)
  • Group training programs (Virtual or in person)
  • Support groups (Virtual or in person)

Definitions

Family, friend and neighbor care: Family, friend, and neighbor (FFN) care is home-based care – in the caregiver’s or child’s home – provided by caregivers who are relatives (e.g., grandparents, aunts and uncles, elders or older siblings), friends, neighbors, babysitters, nannies or parents supporting other children in addition to their own. This type of child care takes place outside of an early child care center, program or family child care (FCC) home. FFN care is the most prevalent and widely practiced form of child care. Some of the common terms used to refer to FFN care include non-parental child care, informal care, unregulated child care, home-based care, kith and kin care, relative care, legally unlicensed and license-exempt care. 

Social-emotional development: The Foundation defines social-emotional development as a child’s ability to understand the feelings of others, control his or her own feelings and behaviors, get along with other children and build relationships with adults.

Multigenerational: The Foundation defines multigenerational as an approach when programs and policies are designed with the whole family’s educational and economic future in mind, and families are assisted to reach the social networks and resources they need to be successful in life, opportunity becomes a family tradition.

We often partner with third-party evaluators, contractors and other organizations over the course of our work with applicants and grantees. Your application and its attachments may be shared with these individuals or entities during the review process and grant cycle. All third-party organizations partnering with the Foundation have signed a confidentiality agreement and will not use or share the information for purposes outside of the scope of work specific to the grant application or grant award. If you have any concerns or would like additional information, please email grants@coloradohealth.org or call our senior director of Grantmaking Operations at 303-953-3600.

We encourage all applicants to sign up in our grants portal to confirm registration is complete at least a week in advance of submitting a grant application. Apply for funding by June 15, 2021.

Si necesita acceder la solicitud de fondos en español, por favor contáctenos a grants@coloradohealth.org

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