Promoting high quality early childhood education for low-income children.

2017 GuidelinesHow to Apply
Announcement: Effective January 2017, the EQUIP grants program will be managed by April Walker. Please direct all inquiries to April at (312)704-8260 or

The Early Childhood Education Quality Improvement Program (EQUIP)
provides multi-year, capacity-building support to early childhood education agencies, helping them to work with the staff and families to create long-lasting, sustainable quality improvements that directly benefit low-income children between the ages of birth to five.

Early childhood centers must respond to a shifting array of needs and offer services that encompass entire families. With the number of demands put on child care centers, the ability to have funds marked for quality rather than "putting out fires" is important. EQUIP grants help to address this need for quality early childhood education.

EQUIP provides resources that allow centers to address specific issues of importance to them and to work intensively on adding quality components to their programs. Example program areas include pre-literacy, behavior management, parent engagement, and arts education.

All projects, regardless of the specific focus, promote the overall well-being of children by encouraging a love of learning and healthy physical and mental development.

EQUIP 2018

2018 Applications available soon!

See below for guidelines and applications.  If you are a current grantee and would like to apply for a renewal grant, please download the Renewal Application. Please read the guidelines carefully as there are changes from previous years.

Download an Application. Please read the guidelines carefully before applying!
Guidelines PDFFirst-Year ApplicationRenewal Application