July 7, 2023

PA DHS Accepting Applications for Children’s Trust Fund Grants

The Pennsylvania Department of Human Services (DHS) is accepting applications for the Children’s Trust Fund (CTF) grants to promote primary and secondary child abuse and neglect prevention programs in community-based settings in order to address child and family well-being and prevent abuse and neglect of children in the Commonwealth. The maximum CTF grant award is $50,000 per year.

About the Children’s Trust Fund Grants

The mission of the Pennsylvania Children’s Trust Fund (CTF) is to prevent child abuse and neglect in Pennsylvania. To do this, the CTF Board of Directors funds community-based primary and secondary prevention programs that support families.

The CTF was established in December 1988 by Act 1988-151. It operates under the administration of the CTF Board and is supported by the Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL), a dual deputate of the Department of Human Services (DHS) the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE).

Funds for the CTF are generated from a $10 surcharge on all applications for marriage licenses and divorce complaints. These surcharges are paid into a special non-lapsing fund. Interest, donations and federal funds also contribute to the CTF.

The CTF is dedicated to funding community-based programs to prevent child abuse and neglect. Since its inception, the CTF has invested more than $37 million through 295 grants. See the list of current grantees.

The CTF also supports the work of the Pennsylvania Strengthening Families Leadership Team.

How to Apply

Application details and forms are available at the eMarketPlace website.

Each Applicant must submit one complete copy of the Submittal via email to The subject line of the email must indicate “RFA 13-23 Application”. Applications are due by 10 a.m. on July 31, 2023. Please refer to the eMarketplace listing for any changes regarding the deadline.

Organizations can view the bid online. Awarded contracts are posted to eMarketplace after they become fully executed.


If you have a question, send an email to Robin Lease at RAPWRFAQUESTIONS@PA.GOV. All emails should include the subject line “RFA #13-23 Question” and must be submitted by July 14, 2023 at 10 a.m. Written answers will be posted on the eMarketPlace website on July 21, 2023.


February 22, 2023

ELPA Poll Shows Strong Support for Investments into Early Childhood

A new poll, commissioned by the Early Learning PA Coalition and conducted by Susquehanna Polling and Research from February 1 – 7, 2023, found that 98% of PA voters believe that early childhood education is important. The poll also showed strong voter support for increased investment for early care and education programs like pre-k, high-quality child care and home visiting services.

There has been significant growth in voter’s overall support from a June 2022 poll, where 90% of voters said they found early childhood education to be important.

Poll Details

Partners of the Early Learning PA Coalition released the new polling data on voter support for early childhood care and education programs during a press conference held on Tuesday, February, 21, 2023 at the Capitol Rotunda in Harrisburg, PA.

According to the poll:

  • 78% of PA voters support increasing state funding to serve more eligible children in pre-k programs, which is an increase from 65% in 2022;
  • 78% of PA voters also support increasing state funding to help more low-income working families afford high-quality child care, up from 67% in 2022;
  • 68% of PA voters support increasing state funding to provide voluntary home visiting services to eligible families , up from 60% in 2022; and
  • 81% of PA voters favor allocating state funding to increase wages of child care workers.

“As we start budget season here in Harrisburg, the partners of the Early Learning PA Coalition urge Governor Shapiro and all members of the General Assembly to respond to this level of voter support for growing the Commonwealth’s investments in early care and education,” said Kristen Rotz, President of the United Way of Pennsylvania and principal partner in the Early Learning PA Coalition. “Pennsylvania must make these programs more accessible to children and families that qualify and further stabilize and strengthen the system by addressing historic teacher shortages caused by low wages.” said Rotz.

Visit the Pre-K for PA Facebook page to watch the February 21, 2023 press conference in full.


August 22, 2022

Recording of 2022 Market Rate Survey Available

A recording of the Pennsylvania Child Care Association’s (PACCA) 2022 Market Rate Survey and YOU webinar is now available for child care providers.

Webinar Recording

The webinar, which was held on August 17, 2022, includes information about the importance of the Market Rate Survey, the elements of the survey, and how the information may be used.

The team from Penn State Harrisburg, Institute of State and Regional Affairs, coordinators of the survey collection and evaluation, shared the new complementary study in progress to assess the Cost of Care.

Watch the recording.

About the Market Rate Survey

Every two years, the federal government requires that states conduct a Market Rate Survey of child care. Information from the Market Rate Survey provides the Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL) with important data to compare private pay prices with the Child Care Works (CCW) base rate reimbursements.

Rather than pulling information from Provider Self-Service as conducted in 2016 and 2019, this year the Market Rate Survey requires child care providers to fill out a survey form. The final deadline to complete the survey is October 11, 2022.