Early Childhood Summer Support Grants

Request for Proposals

Oregon Community Foundation is focused on addressing the opportunity gap in early childhood education by reducing socioeconomic, geographic and racial inequities in access to critical services. The upcoming summer months are a critical opportunity for provision of programs that can help families overcome the negative impacts of months of stress and isolation on learning and social-emotional health resulting from the COVID pandemic. Through this one-time grant program, funded by the State of Oregon, OCF plans to award $1.2 million to support community-based, birth to 5 interactive parent-child programs, offered in group settings through public and nonprofit organizations across the state during summer 2021.

Programs eligible for OCF Early Childhood Summer Support Grants are those planning to provide community-based in-person or hybrid services supporting social-emotional development, parent engagement and/or school readiness through group activities, workshops and classes. Priority will be given to programs that serve, reflect, and are responsive to the specific needs of children and families from Black, Indigenous, Latino/a/x, and other communities of color, immigrant/refugee communities, children from low-income families, LGBTQIA+ families, children with disabilities, and children living in under-resourced rural communities.

Scope of Applications

OCF requests proposals from organizations seeking to deliver summer programming (up to 12 weeks in summer 2021) for children birth to 5 and their parents, to support social-emotional development, parent-child attachment, parent engagement, peer learning and community-building.

Eligible program models include, but are not limited to:

  • “Play and Learn” programs
  • Summer group-based programs delivered by providers of home visiting services
  • “Baby and Me” workshops and classes
  • Parent-child kindergarten readiness programs 

This grant program recognizes that the pandemic has had wide and varied impacts on children and families across the state and that those impacts will also continue to influence how families will engage in summer learning and enrichment. Grants will fund a variety of programs to ensure young children and their parents have the best opportunity to choose the program that will help them address the educational, social, emotional, and other impacts of the pandemic.

Grants will cover general operating costs of programs, including but not limited to:

  • Hiring and/or compensating staff or contractors to conduct outreach to families, coordinate and plan programs, and provide interactive summer activity and enrichment opportunities for children and their parents.

    Materials, resources, curricula, equipment, food and basic needs, transportation costs, stipends, incentives, and other items to successfully support providing summer learning opportunities.
  • Costs associated with expanding summer program offerings to reach and include more young children and their parents, including additional space, materials, resources, transportation, and staffing.
  • Materials, equipment, PPE, trainings, and other items to meet OHA guidelines and ensure that safety needs of staff, participants, and families are met.
  • Hiring staff or contracting with experts to ensure program(s) are able to meet evolving OHA guidelines to ensure the safety of children, families, and staff.


One-time grants ranging up to $50,000 will be awarded to eligible organizations. We anticipate a wide range of award sizes based on program size, type, and population focus. Applicants must have experience offering similar programming to young children and their families and commit to monitoring and continuing to meet OHA guidelines. Eligible organizations include nonprofit 501(c)(3) organizations, tribal governments, public agencies, schools, and colleges located in Oregon that provide community-based programming.

The OCF Early Childhood Summer Support Grant Program will target funds to organizations serving priority populations as previously described.

At the time of submitting the grant application, organizations must also self-certify that they are in compliance with all local and state standards that ensure the safety and protection of the children with whom they provide services. They must self-certify that they will carry all requisite insurance needed to protect against loss or damages incurred

Programs that are eligible for Early Learning Division Summer Learning and Child Care Grants (Early Childhood Equity Fund, Oregon Pre-Kindergarten, and Preschool Promise grantees) are not eligible for OCF funds. Please click here for more information about ELD summer programming funding.


A PDF of the application to review can be found here and and a PDF of the full RFP here. Visit MyOCF to start the application process.

Reporting Expectations

At the conclusion of the grant, organizations may be asked to participate in a focus group and/or survey to share learnings and information about use of funds and impacts. No other report will be required.

Review Process

The application deadline is May 25, 2021, and applicants will be notified about grant awards on or before June 25, 2021, with checks mailed in the fourth week of June. Applications will be considered based upon populations reached and geographic location.


Please take a look at the FAQs in the section below.

Questions about technical help with the application process or online application portal can be directed to grants@oregoncf.org.

For additional information contact Mary Louise McClintock, mlmcclintock@oregoncf.org.

Frequently Asked Questions

What type of programming are the Early Childhood Summer Support grants intended to support?
Is my for-profit child care program eligible for these funds?
What is the deadline for submission of applications?
When will grant awards be announced?
When will funds be received?
How does OCF define “parent-child” for purposes of program eligibility?
How does OCF define “parent”?
Must programming be offered in person?
Must the programs serve all ages from birth to age 5?
What amount should we apply for?
Is a budget document required?
How does OCF define an “under-resourced rural community”?
Who do I contact with questions about program eligibility?
I’m having trouble with the online application system. Who do I contact for assistance?