Starting a business is exciting, but also overwhelming. Opening the doors to a daycare center can be stressful due to regulations and safety concerns. Working with children involves looking out for their well-being and ensuring there will be enough supervision. On top of making sure your daycare will be set up for the safety of the children, funding may be an issue to get everything you need. Government grants are accessible and can provide help with startup funds for tribal organizations, non-commercial educational institutions, and non-profit private ventures. Once you have your daycare center operating license, you can seek government grants.
Potential Government Grants
Grants are provided by the federal government through a state agency for non-commercial populations and areas that have specific needs including historically black colleges and low-income rural towns. The Community Facilities Program provides grants from The U.S Department of Agriculture. Community Development Block Grants are available through The Department of Housing and Urban Development. Additional grants are provided through The Health and Human Services Department with its Child Care and Development Fund.
Grant Application Process
The thought of filling out a grant application may seem intimidating, but it's fairly self-explanatory. Before you begin filling out the application, make sure you have a daycare operating license and a tax identification number. A business license is also mandatory. If you don't have this information on your application, you won't be considered. If you submit a grant proposal, it should cover the key areas such as start-up issues, work plan, operating budget, and any facility and staff details. Once you fill out the application, someone will get back to you and explain the next steps, should you get approved.
Grant Amounts and Likelihood of Receiving Funds
Government grants cover several costs involved with starting a daycare such as construction, land purchases, renovations, and necessary equipment for the daycare. Districts, towns, and cities with less than 20,000 residents are eligible to apply for grants. Living in an area that has a low population and near-poverty income levels will have higher priority for funding. Expect a grant to typically cover nearly 75 percent of daycare project costs.
Assuming you receive approval for the government grant, make sure to follow through with final preparations. Prior to opening your daycare center for the first time, make sure it's completely safe, and you have insurance. Double, even triple to check to make sure you only have safe toys and appropriate for each age group.