Grants and Financial Opportunities

State Early Learning Scholarships

Families may apply for State Early Learning Scholarships. These Scholarships give families financial support to help pay for high-quality early care and education to prepare their young children for school.  CLICK HERE for the Family Application and Instructions. Please share the application with families in your community. Early Learning Programs must participate in Parent Aware to serve scholarship children.  

Think Small continues to accept applications; there is no deadline for submitting an application.

While there is not significant new funding at this time, it is still beneficial for a family to complete an application and join our interest list. When funding is available, the families on our interest list will be the first to be notified.

Please call 651-641-6604 or toll-free 1-855-898-4465 to talk with our scholarship team if you have questions about helping families fill out applications. They will guide families through a phone intake process to determine eligibility and will send applications to eligible families.

Child Care Services Grants

These grants are available to assist licensed child care providers/programs and legally exempt school-based school-age care programs with increasing the quality of their programs. Think Small administers the Child Care Services Grant programs in the seven county metro area (Anoka, Carver, Dakota, Hennepin, Ramsey, Scott and Washington).

NEW changes this year!

  1. Spending Change
    • No more maximum amounts under each spending category. Providers may spend in any category that they feel meets the needs of their program.
  2. Additional Category Added: Relationships with Families
    • This category is to promote two-way communication between families. Refer to page 7 of the application guide for more details.
  3. Spending Category Name Changes
    • Physical Health & Well-Being has changed to Health and Well-Being
    • Teaching and Relationships has changed to Teaching and Relationships with Children
    • Assessment of Child Progress has changed to Assessment and Planning for Each Individual Child
    • Teacher Training and Education has changed to Professionalism
    • Relationships with Families is a new category

As of September 25, 2017, we are no longer accepting submissions for this grant.
Award / Denial letters will be mailed out the week of November 1, 2017.
Contact your Grant Administrator for questions at 651-366-6797.


Regional Grant Advisory Committee Opportunity!

We NEED your help! A few hours of your time equals better care and education for children in your neighborhood.

We are currently accepting applications for 2017 to 2018. Call 651-366-6797 for this great opportunity or download the application and email it to


Emergency Grant Applications

Emergency Grants are available to assist licensed child care providers/programs and legally exempt school-based school-age care programs experiencing an emergency. An emergency includes occurrences that disrupt a provider/program’s immediate ability to provide care for the children enrolled in their program, or occurrences that jeopardize the health and safety of the children in the program. Please call the Grant Line at 651-366-6797 or send a request to for availability of Emergency Grant Funds.