The Baker-Polito Administration and the Department of Early Education and Care (EEC) recently announced a total of $3,936,000 in FY22 funding through the Early Education and Out of School Time (EEOST) Capital Fund to 17 projects across the Commonwealth. EEOST funding is intended to provide center-based early education and out-of-school time care facilities with resources to make renovations that enhance health and safety, and the improvements made possible by these grants will impact over 2,300 young children served by the sites.
Child care is an essential part of our state’s infrastructure. While the COVID-19 pandemic underscored this truth in stark terms, it is something we at CIF have always believed and maintained as a core value. The provision of affordable, accessible child care for everyone across our State is eminently important. These programs provide vital support to working families and help us build toward a future where every child is offered the chance to grow and flourish regardless of circumstance.
CIF is proud to work alongside the Baker-Polito administration, and EEC to disburse these grants. CIF reviews applications for funding each year and co-manages the process to ensure critical funding is made available for child care centers that have demonstrated the greatest levels of need.
Below we have highlighted four projects that have received EEOST funds, just a sampling of the positive outcomes that will be achieved across Massachusetts through the distribution of these latest grants:
- South Shore Stars Randolph Preschool, Randolph – $250,000
- Serving over 1,000 children, Stars provides comprehensive early education and youth development programs that enhance the optimal growth of children from economically and culturally diverse families, using a family support approach in collaboration with schools and other service providers. EEOST grants will be used to create a natural play space, including a turf area, patios, an outdoor classroom, sheds, and shade structures– all while incorporating features that honor the history of Randolph as the home of Massachusetts Ponkapoag People.
- Behavioral Health Network’s Kidstop Children’s Center, Ware – $250,000
- Kidstop Children’s Center operates an early childhood education and out-of-school time program in Ware serving 39 children. EEOST grants will be used for a variety of critical improvements, including safety improvements to playground facilities, HVAC system improvements, floor and parking lot resurfacing, bathroom fixture replacements to incorporate child-sized sinks and toilets; exterior door replacement, and the installation of a new security system.
- JFK Family Service Center, Charlestown – $185,000
- The John F. Kennedy Family Service Center, Inc., is a multi-service non-profit corporation. The organization has achieved expertise in early childhood education, daycare, after-school programs, antipoverty-based community services, and eldercare supports and services. EEOST grants will be used to increase accessibility at the site, including installing a ramp outside of a classroom to serve as an accessible egress and facilitating compliance with the emergency evacuation of infants in cribs. This will enable the center to begin serving infants for the first time.
- Malden YMCA, Malden – $183,000
- Malden YMCA’s Early Learning Center addresses all aspects of child development and a wide range of enrichment activities, including swimming, music, and movement, and a health and nutrition curriculum. The EEOST grant will be used to make a number of safety improvements, including new flooring, a suspended ceiling in three rooms, an automatic door release at the main entrance, an alarm control system for eight classrooms, a door alarm between the gymnasium and child care area, and fencing for play areas.
The official funding announcement can be accessed here: https://www.mass.gov/news/baker-polito-administration-awards-39-million-to-improve-facilities-for-early-education-out-of-school-time-programs
For further information on CEDAC and CIF’s work in support of affordable child care, please visit: https://cedac.org/cif/