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2021 Future Ready Iowa Childcare Challenge Fund Grant

Grants to Iowa Nonprofits, Businesses, and
Consortiums to Increase Access to Child Care

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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Iowa Workforce Development (IWD) and Future Ready Iowa

Conf. Date:


Deadline Date:

02/12/21 11:59 PM Central Time


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Grants to Iowa nonprofit organizations, businesses, and consortiums to increase access to child care. Funding is intended to support capital projects to set up child care facilities and expand the availability of affordable, quality child care for working residents throughout the State. To support this work, the fund will award competitive grants to support community and regional initiatives. Iowa Workforce Development is seeking collaborative applications that propose new, cutting-edge ideas as well as proven strategies.

The Child Care Challenge Fund can be used to support new construction of a child care facility, rehabilitation of an existing structure as a child care facility, or the retrofitting and repurposing of an existing structure for use as a child care facility.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 194302

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Estimated Size of Grant:

IWD anticipates awarding grants ranging from $5,000 to $100,000.

Term of Contract:

Successful applicants must provide proof to Iowa Workforce that privately raised funds have been expended in full, at which time, then matching funds may be drawn down. Awardees must be able to draw down state funds by June 30, 2021. All matching funds must be utilized within 12 months of receipt and any unexpended matching dollars must be returned to Iowa Workforce Development thereafter.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Eligible applicants include businesses, non-profits and consortiums in good standing with the State of Iowa. IWD encourages applicants to cultivate partnerships to enhance project activities and outcomes. If an employer is not the lead applicant, applicants are required to include a letter of commitment from an employer as a key project partner with the application submission.

Consortium: means a consortium of two or more employers or businesses, at least one of which must be a private employer.

Additional consideration will be given to organizations that demonstrate the administrative capacity and a history of successfully implementing innovative projects. Additional consideration will also be given to organizations and projects in local workforce areas and regions throughout the State of Iowa that document how the project will impact workforce, education and economic development.

The fund cannot be used for administrative expenses of operating the program or implementing the project.

Pre-proposal Conference:

To learn more about the Child Care Challenge Fund please join IWD for a webinar on January 27 at 12:00 pm on Zoom.

If you cannot attend the webinar, the webinar recording will be available on a day after the webinar.

Pre-Application Information:

Applications for the funds are due by Friday, February 12, 2021, at 11:59 p.m. Central Time.

Awardees will be notified no later than February 19, 2021.

Applicants must submit applications electronically via IWD recommends that applicants create an account and begin the application in advance of the deadline.

The Child Care Challenge Fund is a match grant. What this means is that the grant is intended to serve as a match to funds raised privately or donated in kind (labor and materials) for the purposes of the project by the applicant and/or project partners. Applicants may request a Child Care Challenge match grant for an amount up to the amount of the private funds raised.

Applicants must prove the existence of and security of the original funds or documentation showing proof of the in-kind services or goods in order to qualify for a match from the Child Care Challenge Fund. Applicants need to plan to expend all private funds first.

View this opportunity on

Webinar about the application process: "How to apply for the Future Ready Iowa Childcare Challenge" (Jan. 27, 2021):

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Please direct any questions regarding this NOFO to:

Allison Hanrahan
Iowa Workforce Development
1000 East Grand Avenue
Des Moines, IA 50319

Katherine Leggett
Phone: 515-204-1378

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Iowa

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