nonprofit grant writing consulting.jpg

An Overview of Head Start and Early Head Start Program

Through the Improving Head Start for School Readiness Act of 2007, the federal government allows for assistance for Head Start and Early Head Start programs that help low-income families meet their kids' health, social, and development needs.

Head Start programs occur in child care centers, the homes of people who care for children or those that choose to have a staff member go to the home of a child once a week to help.

The point of any local, private, or public, non-profit organization that wants to help with the Head Start Program can apply for Head Start grants right away on the Office of Head Start's (OHS) funding website. When Head Start gives a grant to a group, that group is called a "Head Start agency." The Head Start grant is then sent straight to the organization by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services regional office.

To qualify for these grants, Sunshine Nonprofit Solutions offers many services that include grant writing for nonprofits.

Who Can Join the Head Start Program?

Children are eligible for Head Start Programs if:

  • The family's income is either less than the poverty line or the same as it

  • If the family didn't have child care, they might be able to get help from the government

  • The child is homeless

  • A foster family takes care of the child

To be eligible for the Early Head Start baseline grant applications, the program must enroll babies or toddlers younger than three years old. Women who are pregnant may also be able to get help through these programs. If an organization or contracted provider is meeting the requirements of qualified families and enrolls eligible families first, they can register an additional 35% of attendees whose relatives do not meet the criteria for enrollment and whose earnings are far below 130% of the poverty record.

The Head Start Program and How It Works

A group designated as a Head Start agency must offer Head Start continuation applications service through a child care center, a family child care home, home visits, and an approved locally-designated variation. No matter what kind of child care setting is chosen, the program must offer the full range of Head Start Program services, which include education and child development, community engagement, health and family, services for children with disabilities, and transition services.

Childcare Facilities

Head Start agencies can be child care centers, or work with an agency that has been chosen to run the program. Most Head Start services at child care centers are given in classrooms. Child care centers that offer Head Start programs for less than 45 days a year do not need a license.

Homes for Family Child Care

For the Grant Head Start or Early Head Start programs, family child care homes should work with a chosen Head Start agency. The agency must sign a legally binding contract with one or more family child care providers that spell out each party's roles, rights, and responsibilities, or the program must be the child care provider's employer.

Home Visiting

Agencies can offer home visits as part of the Head Start Program either through their organization or a provider they have hired. With the home visiting option, most Head Start services are done in the child's home, and socialization happens in groups. A Head Start home visitor must go to the family's house at least 32 times a year for at least an hour and a half each time. In other words, they have to go to the family's house once a week.

Variations in Program Designated Centrally

If a community has unique needs that aren't met by any of the above program models, an agency or contracted provider can ask to run a locally-designated program option.

Why You Should Choose Sunshine Nonprofit Solutions for Your Organization

Sunshine Non-Profit Solutions helps non-profit organizations with all the complexities and forms that are required to successfully receive grants to run Early Head Start and Head Start programs. These services include writing grants, making strategic plans, doing community assessments, and evaluating programs to ensure they lead to success. Sunshine Nonprofit Solutions also offers specialized services to help Head Start and Early Start Programs prepare for a DRS (Designation Renewal Grant) or start a new Early Head Start-Child Care Partnership Grant. Sunshine Nonprofit Solutions wants nonprofits to do well, and have a lot of tools to help get employees involved. Read on to learn more about our services and how your organization can benefit.

Strategic Planning

Most people only see how a nonprofit project turns out in the end. They don't see how much work and planning went into getting to that point. At Sunshine Nonprofit Solutions, we are pleased to work with nonprofits and offer our strategic development services. We assist you by figuring out what your community needs are, plan your project and course of action, and work with your Board of Directors to finish the details and get things started.

Grant Writing

Once you have a plan, the next step is to get the money you need to start working on your project and make it a reality. Grants are the best way for nonprofits to get the funds they require for tasks. At Sunshine Nonprofit Solutions, we collaborate with your staff to train a grant writing assignment, create logic models, evaluate grants, and even write grants with the help of our grant writers.

Employee Training

Even though a good plan and the money to make it happen are very important, neither will help you reach your goals without a strong team. At Sunshine Nonprofit Solutions, our team knows how important it is to have a good team. We help other nonprofits build a "dream team" by helping them develop their employees. We will help you learn how to be a better leader and get your employees more involved so that you and your organization feel like an unstoppable force.

Improve Your Results

Without the right tools and resources, it might be hard to make your vision come true. At Sunshine Nonprofit Solutions, our goal is to help nonprofits get better at what they do and clarify what they want to do so they can start making fundamental changes in their communities. Our team can point you in the right direction and give you the tools you need to be more successful than ever before.