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Early Childhood Programs

Mini-Grant Program


The Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL) and the PA Key is excited to offer Pennsylvania’s licensed early learning programs who participate in Keystone STARS an opportunity to apply for up to $5,000 in funding to support environmental health and environment and ecology education improvements in their programs. This mini-grant program is a wonderful way for PA early learning programs to make purchases of equipment, supplies, maintenance, professional maintenance services, and a selection of educational materials that will make their facilities and programs environmentally healthier.

This mini-grants program is funded by the Heinz Endowments’ Children, Youth & Families program as part of the PA ECE Healthy & Green Initiative. This competitive mini-grant program is time-limited for the 2013 calendar year, so OCDEL encourages you to make the most of this unique opportunity!

Healthy & Green Request for Proposal, Application Worksheet, and Application Helpful Tips for information on how to apply.

The following list describes the basic eligibility requirements for the PA Healthy & Green Mini-Grants program: 

1. Applicants must be Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare regulated child care centers, group child care homes, or family child care homes.

2. Applicants must be PA Keystone STARS participants. All provider types are encouraged to make an application.

3. Programs who serve children ages 6 weeks to 6 years of age are eligible.

4. Programs must complete and provide documentation of completion of the professional development listed below to be eligible to apply for grant support:

A.  Eco-Healthy Childcare© (three hour session). This session targets program directors, family child care home operators, or those with the authority to make operational, programmatic, and maintenance decisions in their facilities. Participants will learn why environmental health is important for our youngest children, the typical routes of exposure to environmental hazards, and tips to reduce exposures to environmental toxins/hazards. Participants will also become familiar with the Eco-Healthy Child Care Checklist©, which is designed to help programs gauge their progress towards becoming “eco-healthy”.

a. Eco-Healthy Childcare© is designated as a health and safety professional development event (CBK7, Topic Code 84) and meets the criteria to satisfy programs’ annual health and safety credit hour requirements. 
b. Must be offered by a PA Eco-Healthy Child Care© certified professional development instructor. A list of qualified instructors TBA. Please also check the PA Key Calendar for sessions being held near you.

B. Project Learning Tree or Growing Up WILD (two hour session).  These sessions target family child care home operators, program directors, and/or lead teachers who have the authority and ability to implement this supportive curriculum in their ongoing programming.

a. Project Learning Tree and Growing Up WILD are both designated as an environment, curriculum and content professional development event (CBK2, Topic Code 13)
b. Must be offered by a Project Learning Tree and/or Growing Up WILD certified professional development instructor. A list of qualified instructors TBA. Please also check the PA Key Calendar for sessions being held near you.

5. Environmental health improvements must be the central part of the applicant’s proposal.


Applications are closed for 2013 - the form below are for reference only.


Note: If you are a Keystone STARS participant and you plan to apply for the PA ECE Healthy & Green Mini-Grants program, you are required to attend an Eco-Healthy Child Care professional development session in order to be eligible to make a grant application.

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