Foundation Awards $100,000 Grant To CRCF
The Chautauqua Region Community Foundation has received a $100,000 grant from the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation to support small home-based childcare providers through the Small Grants for Small Children program.
CRCF will work with Chautauqua Opportunities to distribute grants of $2,000 to support up to 50 small home-based childcare providers across Chautauqua County. Childcare providers will have flexibility to use the funds as they best see fit to help them re-open or remain open to continue to provide high quality care to children.
“We are so pleased to partner with the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation on this important grant,” said Tory Irgang, Chautauqua Region Community Foundation executive director. “Their quick response to the needs of child care providers in making this funding available was amazing. These are dollars are helping our child care providers remain viable during the most challenging circumstances they have ever faced.”
During the pandemic, childcare providers have been struggling to accommodate the changing needs of families and balance this with their own needs for reliable income and fears of being exposed to COVID-19. Most challenged are the small home-based childcare programs that serve between three and twelve children. Currently, they are ineligible for many of the Federal and State supports available to small businesses. This is exacerbated by the fact that most programs supporting small business do not have childcare on their radar.
CRCF worked with the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation to quickly pilot the Small Grants for Small Children program in the spring, leading up to the Foundation’s $1 million total investment to support small home-based childcare providers across the nine counties of Western New York. Grants have also been distributed to the Rochester Area Community Foundation, Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo and the Cattaraugus Region Community Foundation. This program is modeled after the long-standing Small Grants to Small Children developed by the Adirondack Foundation.
“Childcare is essential now more than ever,” said Amber Slichta, vice president of programs at the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation. “Small home-based childcare providers rarely qualify for support and in turn, do not view themselves as small businesses.”