Insight Grants

Featured Grant Opportunity: Erie Community Foundation Shaping Tomorrow Grant

The Erie Community Foundation is offering the Shaping Tomorrow grant to support collaborative and multi-year efforts to address critical community needs. This is a great opportunity for non-profits located in Erie County, PA!

We’re including basic information on the grant below. Be sure to visit the Erie Community Foundation Shaping Tomorrow Grant page for full details and access to the grant application.

Program Overview: Grants may be awarded for efforts that address any of the eight Erie Vital Signs topic areas including: Cultural Vitality, Community & Civic Engagement, The Economy, Regional Cooperation, Health, Environment, Education and Brain Gain. It is important to note, however, that the three priority areas for funding in 2014 are Health, Education and The Economy. Applicants are likely to be most competitive by applying for funding for a project that is responsive to one of the identified priority areas.

The focus areas under the Health topic area are Adult Health, Child Health, and Diabetes. The focus of Child Health is K-6 overweight and obesity. Based on the Vital Sign indicators, the Foundation may have some interest in overweight and obesity outcomes for 7-12 as well. Under Adult Health, physical activity and overweight/obesity are among many indicators the Foundation intends to follow.

The focus areas under the Education topic area are: Educational Attainment, PSSA Results, Graduation Rates, Educational Spending, Early Childhood Education Program Participation, and Early Childhood Education Risk Factor Surveillance.

The focus areas under the Economy topic area are: Business Community, Employment, Wages, Median Household Income, Homeownership, Per Capita Income, Poverty, Self-Sufficiency, Visitor and Tourism Impact, and Cost of Living.

Award: Total grant awards are up to $300,000 each.

Who Can Apply: Non-profits located in Erie County, PA who service a target population with the majority of the population located in Erie County, PA.

When is the Deadline?: There are two grant deadlines this year, 2/14/2014 and 8/27/2014.

How much work is involved in the application?: Quite a bit. As can be expected when a funder is offering a grant that will potentially fund a large award, this is a thorough grant application that requires fully detailed explanations of all aspects of your project. The upcoming February deadline is very close and may not be realistic for potential applicants who haven’t started working on an application yet, but the August deadline allows for plenty of time to put together a competitive proposal.

Project plans should be collaborative and may be multi-year. Consider Erie County, PA-based organizations with which you might partner on your application. Think about how they can contribute to your project or how your project might build on their existing efforts to serve Erie County residents within your chosen topic area.

We’ll continue to add more great featured grant opportunities to the Insight Blog. If you would like more information on Insight’s grant writing, editing, or research services, please contact us by phone at 716-474-0981, email, or fill out our online contact form.

Featured Grant Opportunity: CYCLE Kids Fit Kids are Happy Kids Grant

CYCLE Kids is an incredible organization based in Cambridge, Massachusetts that offers a Fit Kids are Happy Kids Grant to obtain a CYCLE Kids Program. CYCLE kids uses a comprehensive curriculum that teaches not just the skill and safe practices of riding a bike, but also how to make good nutrition choices; incorporating physical activity, reading and writing skills.

Below you’ll find basic information on the grant. If you are interested in getting the complete details or applying be sure to visit the Fit Kids are Happy Kids Grant page.

Program Overview: Designed for 4th and 5th grade students, the program can be taught during physical education classes or in after school programs.

Award: A license agreement with CYCLE Kids for curriculum and program use, teacher guidebooks, teacher training, 50 student textbooks, 10 bicycles, and 25 helmets–a $15,000 value!

Who Can Apply: Public or private schools, including charter schools or after school programs affiliated with a community center, such as a YMCA, that serves 4th and 5th grade students.

When is the Deadline?: March 3, 2014.

Where Do I Apply?: CYCLE Kids Fit Kids are Happy Kids Grant

How much work is involved in the application?: Not much! One of many great things about this application is that it is very short and simple! Good luck!!

No 2014 PEP Competition?! What Do We Do Now?

We know from many inquiries and conversations over the last six months that a lot of schools and community-based organizations out there were very eager and have already been preparing to apply for the Carol M. White PEP grant in 2014. No doubt many are disappointed to learn they’ll have to wait until at least next year before that can happen, now that we know PEP will fund down the slate rather than accepting new applications for 2014 awards.

If you are among those who had hoped to apply or re-apply in 2014, you’re probably wondering what you can possibly do to sustain the support and momentum you may have already built between now and next year. The good news is we have a few ideas for you!

1) If you applied for PEP in 2013 but were not selected for an award, dig out your 2013 PEP application and keep it handy. Then ensure you and anyone listed in the application forms as the grant program contact, project director, or Authorized Representative vigilantly watches email this spring and summer. You will not have to re-submit an application to be considered for an award in 2014 if you applied in 2013 but did not win, but the US Department of Education (ED) may contact you with questions about your budget or other application components during the selection process. Such communications are almost always conducted over email, and the time allotted for response is typically quite short. Keep in mind being contacted with questions does not guarantee an award, and not being contacted does not mean you won’t win. The most important thing is that you are accessible and quickly and thoroughly responsive if you are contacted.

2) Keep preparing to apply! It’s not too soon to prepare (or continue to prepare) for a 2015 application. PEP is extremely complex and competitive at this point in its history. Use the extra time to really solidify your case for need and your responding project design and plan for implementation. If you’re looking for assistance with the process, contact us.

3) Watch our blog and apply for other grants! Over the next few weeks, we’ll feature some great opportunities you can consider pursuing this year in lieu of PEP. Some of these will be grants that generally support physical activity and/or nutrition education projects, and others will be for specific types of physical activity projects like biking or running programs, for example. As always, the grants featured will NOT represent an all-inclusive list. There are more great grants out there, and we’d encourage you to watch for and apply for them or contact us to discuss assistance identifying others that may be fits for your organization.

As always, good luck!!

ED Funding Forecast Shows Many Opportunities on the Horizon

A review of the US Department of Education’s (ED) Forecast of Funding Opportunities shows funding priorities have shifted as the President and Congress attempt to respond to the increasing need to keep schools safe for students, teachers, and administrators alike. The first major change to the Forecast for FY 2014 shows Congress has supported several new mental health and safety grant programs for schools proposed by the President in addition to a key existing program.

Two School Climate Transformation Grant programs will be available for the first time in 2014: one for states (SEAs) and one for school districts (LEAs). The President requested at total of $50 million for the two programs. We await the RFPs to determine the final amounts available. Both programs will seek to prevent and reduce bullying and other problem behaviors through implementation of evidence-based programs according to information available at

Eve Birge, Program Manager for the LEA grant, states, “The purpose of the School Climate Transformation grant program is to help States and school districts build local capacity to train teachers and other school staff to implement multi-tiered behavioral frameworks to improve school climate.”

More information about the School Climate Transformation grants will be released this Spring when their RFPs are available. Presently, applications/RFPs for both programs are forecasted for release on or around April 11th with deadlines on or around May 21st.

Another new grant surfacing in 2014 is Project Prevent. We anticipate $25 million will be available for awards for this program in 2014, if funds allocated align with the President’s recommendation. As proposed by the President, this grant would seek to enable school districts with high levels of violence to provide social and emotional supports and mental health services for trauma or anxiety, while also promoting conflict resolution and other school-based strategies to prevent further violence from occurring. The application is expected to be available on or around April 25th, and the deadline for applying is expected to be on or around June 9th.

A new grant for states entitled Grants to SEAs for Emergency Management will also be available in 2014 and is likely to be similar to the previous LEA grant known as Readiness and Emergency Management for Schools and its predecessor Emergency Response and Crisis Management.  The President recommended up to 30 million dollars for this program. With the application opening on or around April 3rd, the grant seeks to support States in helping schools develop, implement, and improve emergency management plans. This is in response to the need of schools to strengthen their capacity to prevent, prepare for, respond to and recover from emergencies and crisis events. The deadline for this grant is expected to be on or around May 19th.

Congress once again supported the Elementary and Secondary School Counseling grant for 2014, despite the President’s proposal to cut this valuable program, which exists to help school districts establish or expand school-based counseling programs and mental health supports for students.  Schools that show significant need and develop comprehensive, innovative counseling programs with significant promise for dissemination and replication are given special consideration in applying for this grant. According to the program’s website (, “Projects should: (1) use a developmental, preventive approach, (2) expand the inventory of effective counseling programs, (3) include in-service training, and (4) involve parents and community groups.”

The Elementary and Secondary School Counseling grant application is forecasted for release on or around March 18th with the deadline on or around May 2nd. As this program funded down the slate in 2013, competition in 2014 is expected to be especially tough. Schools hoping to apply should begin preparing NOW.

In addition, ED will partner with the US Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Office of Justice Programs (OJP) on the newly-created DOJ Comprehensive School Safety Programs in 2014. Based on the President’s proposed design, this program is expected to, “provide funds for hiring school personnel including mental health professionals and school resource officers, purchasing school safety equipment, and other school safety activities.” ( Congress has allocated $75 Million for this program in 2014. The application is expected to be posted at when available.

Other key opportunities supporting school safety and/or students’ mental health may be available this year through DOJ, the US Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), the US Department of Homeland Security, and/or the States.

If you are interested in applying for any of the above grants or would like more information on Insight’s services, please contact us by phone at 716-474-0981, email, or fill out our online contact form.

2014 PEP Will Fund Down The Slate

We received confirmation today from the US ED PEP Program Manager, Carlette KyserPegram, that the Carol M. White Physical Education Program (PEP) will fund down the slate in 2014, rather than holding a new competition. This means new PEP awardees will be selected in 2014 from 2013 applicants who scored highly but not quite highly enough to win an award in 2013.

Ms. KyserPegram also shared the following important information, “In terms of FY 2015, generally, we can’t be certain of the status of this program until we have a final, Federal budget in place as these grant funds are appropriated by Congress.  ED does maintain a Grants Forecast page on our agency’s website ( ) where anticipated grant opportunities are announced. As such, we recommend they check ED’s  forecast page periodically for updates to this and other future grant program opportunities.

Additionally, if you  would like weekly e-mail updates related to the work of OSHS, as well as other information related to school safety, substance abuse and violence prevention in education, and the promotion of student health and well-being, they may be interested in subscribing to the OSHS PREVENTION NEWS BULLETIN.  We also highlight other federal funding opportunities related to these topics, including grant competitions, in our office and in other federal agencies.  We will provide information on upcoming OSHS grant competitions in this news bulletin. Subscription information is available online at: .”

U.S. Department of Education 2014 Funding Opportunities Update

The U.S.  Department of Education recently made a significant update to the Forecast of Funding Opportunities for discretionary grant programs for fiscal year 2014. To access the entire list of grant programs, visit Grant Programs for Fiscal year 2014.

We will be covering some of the individual funding opportunities in depth here on the Insight Blog in the near future. If you are a school that has any interest in applying for any of the grant opportunities you see and are interested in speaking with Insight about our services, call us at 716-474-0981, email, or fill out our contact form here.

PEP Grant Funding for 2014

We’ve recently learned that the PEP Grant program will be receiving approximately the same amount of funding in 2014 as it did in 2013, as Congress has completed work on a bill to fund the government for the remainder of FY2014 with $74.5 million dollars allocated for the PEP Grant program.

Multi-year grants funded in 2012 and 2013 will be able to continue their projects and new awards in 2014 are likely.

As we learn new information about PEP we’ll post it here on the Insight blog, as well as on the InsightGrants Twitter account.



New Resource Section for Fire Department Grant Funding

We recently added a resource section to our website for fire department grant opportunities. If you are a fire department or related organization looking for funding opportunities, be sure to visit our fire-related grants section. There are links to the major grant programs offered through FEMA, as well as some various foundation and other grant programs.

Our website also has a  find grants section that you can visit to get information and links to other popular funding sources.

Winners Announced for Community Learning Schools Grant Initiative 2013 (NYSED)

The New York State Education Department (NYSED) recently posted a list of awardees for the Community Schools Grant Initiative (CSGI) for 2013. Congratulations to all of the winners on the award list including Insight Client Wellsville Central School District who is scheduled to receive funding of $120,000 as a 2013-2014 award and a cumulative award total of $500,000 over the period of 2013 – 2016.

Community Schools grants support “plans that target school buildings as ‘community  hubs to deliver co-located or school-linked academic, health, mental health,  nutrition, counseling, legal and/or other services to students and their  families in a manner that will lead to improved educational and other  outcomes.’”

The grant funds support almost any kind of service that support students and their families to help students be more successful in school. Wellsville chose to focus on:

  • Hiring social workers to increase school-based counseling services, establish case-management-like services, and support community linkages for families.
  • Providing school-based dental health services for students.
  • Providing nutrition education for students and their families in partnership with Jones Memorial Hospital.

To see the rules and requirements of the 2013 program as well as a complete list of winners visit the Community Schools Grant Initiative page on NYSED’s website.

Insight Grants