Child Care Business Expansion Grant Program
The Women’s Business Development Council is offering grants of up to $25,000 to qualified Connecticut child care businesses preparing to expand.
We will be offering cash grants of up to $25,000 to support OEC-licensed family homes (DCFH), group homes (DCGH), and centers (DCCC) in financial need with their expansion goals. This grant program is designed to help licensed child care businesses grow their operations and create additional slots or revenue streams.
Grant funds will be awarded to eligible businesses operating for at least 2 years with enrolled children that are: seeking to increase licensed capacity or meaningfully increase enrollment at their existing location; open a new location; grow from family home to group home, or group home to center; or create new revenue streams for the business outside of additional enrollment. Grants will be awarded for applications that will have a measurable impact on the business, its growth and profitability.
Make sure to read the Eligibility section below before beginning the process to apply. We also encourage you to watch a recorded Information Session.
This is a competitive process and the WBDC will not be able to fund all strong applicants.
***This application period is now closed; updates will be shared with applicants by December. ***
Learn About the Expansion Grant Program
Click on the tabs for more information. Items in blue are clickable links.
Info Session Recordings - Watch Now!
Join Part 1: Overview Session to learn about what the grant can be used for and eligibility requirements!
Join Part 2: Application Process to learn about the types of information we’re looking for and how to gather the supporting documents to apply
All of our live sessions have passed. Please sign up below to watch a recording.
Part 1: Overview Session
Thursday, Oct 6 – 5:30pm-6:30pm-English
jueves, 6 de octubre– 7:00pm-8:00pm- Spanish
Friday, Oct 7– 1:30pm-2:30pm- English/Spanish
Wednesday, Oct 12- 1:30pm-2:30pm- English/Spanish
Part 2: Application Process
Saturday, Oct 8- 8:30am-9:30am- English/ Spanish
Friday, Oct 14- 10:00am-11:00am- English/ Spanish
Saturday, Oct 15- 8:30-9:30am- Spanish
We recommend you attend Part 1 and Part 2 of our information session to learn more about our grant program and application process, but you are not obligated to do so. You may choose to attend just one part.
PART 1 – Register Here
PART 2 – Register Here
PARTE 1 en español – registrarse aquí
PARTE 2 en español – registrarse aquí
- In business as an OEC-licensed family home, group, or center with enrolled children for at least 2 years as of October 1, 2022
- Have a minimum of 75% of licensed capacity enrolled as of October 1, 2022, including school age children OR
Current enrollment at 75% of adjusted licensed capacity based on business model
(For instance, a Family Home with licensed capacity of 9 that never takes school-age children would calculate their enrollment based on 6 regular age — e.g., 5 currently enrolled / 6 adjusted capacity = 83% enrollment)
- In good standing with the CT Department of Revenue Services (DRS) and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS)
- Have an established business banking relationship
- Have a formal, digital bookkeeping/financial system (e.g., QuickBooks or ProCare)
- Have a demonstrable financial need
Those that meet the above criteria are encouraged to apply.
Additionally, the following businesses are NOT eligible:
1. Businesses not actively licensed by the Connecticut Office of Early Childhood (OEC) as a family home (DCFH), group home (DCGH), or center (DCCC), and businesses without children currently enrolled.
2. Businesses that were awarded a WBDC Emergency Grant, Emergency Facilities Grant, Expansion Grant or Equity Match Grant in the last 6 months (since April 2022).
3. If your business is outside the child care industry and based in Connecticut, WBDC has other grant programs. We encourage you to schedule an appointment with a WBDC Business Advisor or participate in one of our classes to learn more.
If there are more qualified applications than we can fund this round, priority will be given to the following programs:
- – Serve infants and toddlers
- – Currently receive Care4Kids
- – NAFCC or NAEYC Accredited, or Head Start Approved
- – State and/or federally funded (i.e., Care4Kids, School Readiness, Child Day Care
Contract, State Head Start, Federal Head Start, and DCF)
- – For-profit programs that operate full-time* (See below definition)
*For purposes of the WBDC’s Child Care Business Opportunity Fund grants, the definitions of full-time and part-time are as follows:
a) Full-time for centers (DCCC), group homes (DCGH) programs means that 50% or more of the classrooms in your program operate 30 hours or more per week.
b) Full-time for family child care homes means that your program operates 30 hours or more per week.
c) Part-time for centers (DCCC), group homes (DCGH) programs means that less than 50% of the classrooms in your program operate 30 hours or more per week.
d) Part-time for family child care homes means that your program is open less than 30 hours per week.
These definitions are consistent with those from OEC Stabilization Funding.
Not the right grant for you? Use the button on the right to see our other Child Care Business Grant programs.
Prepare Your Application
Click on the tabs for more information
Before you begin your application, you will be required to create a profile in WBDC’s eCenter portal to provide general information about you and your business.
If you are an existing WBDC client that has used eCenter before to register for classes, you will need to review and update your eCenter Profile by logging into eCenter, and clicking “My Information” on the left.
If you are an existing WBDC client that has not used eCenter before, click the link below to get to our eCenter. Then click “Forgot Password” in the top right corner. Enter your email and follow the on-screen prompts to access to your profile. Once logged in, click “My Information” on the left to complete or update your information.
There are five sections of the application.
Section 1: Business Operations & Financial Summary
Section 2: How You Would Use the Grant
Section 3: Narrative of Your Business
Section 4: Supporting Documents for Uploading
Section 5: Compliance and Consent
Tips for Success
What we’re looking for in an application:
- Thoughtful, complete, and well-developed picture of your business that shows a path to growth
- Exceptionally clear use of funds, with a strong link to growth, along with strong supporting detail
- Historical financials that are thorough, detailed, and thoughtful
- Financial projections that are robust, reflect seasonality of business, and have numbers that make sense
- Display the business’ long-term potential, with strong growth and strong potential for continued growth
- Slot creation potential, with the business being on track to expand its licensed capacity and enrollment
- Job creation potential, with the business being on track to adding more jobs
- Return on investment – that the funds will help unlock growth
- Grant will have a meaningful impact on the business and help the business grow
- Unmet financial need
*Please note* If you received OEC Stabilization Funds, this WBDC grant cannot be used to cover the same expenses you are utilizing Stabilization Funds for. Funds cannot be used for real estate purchases, renovations for a leased building with less than 3 years left on lease, projects that are fully covered by insurance, wish list upgrades not required for continued operations, or for owner’s salary/draw.
Meet an Advisor
WBDC Business Advisors are available to help answer your questions after you have attended a live or on-demand information session. Appointments available in English or Spanish during standard business hours and evenings.
Request an appointment at:
*Please note* If you review your application with a business advisor, it does not mean you will receive a grant, as an external review committee is making the decisions on which applicants receive grants.
Click on the tabs for more information
Proposed Use of Funds' Tracker
We have optional templates for you to use for your historical and financial documents.
If you are a family home (DCFH), a Balance Sheet is not required.
As an Expansion Grant applicant, we highly encourage you to use your existing system, such as QuickBooks or ProCare, to download your financials. If you do not have a financial statement or projections template, you may utilize WBDC’s templates below.
Financial Projections Template: Save a copy in Google Sheets
How to Obtain a Status Letter
You can obtain your Letter of Good Standing from the CT Department of Revenue Services (DRS) by visiting: https://drsindtax.ct.gov/AUT/welcomeindividual.aspx
You will need to log in using the EIN of your LLC, or your Social Security/Tax ID number used to file your taxes. If you file your taxes jointly with your spouse, you will need to use the main Social Security/Tax ID number used to file your taxes.
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