The application development period for the third round of Early Head Start Expansion and Early Head Start – Child Care Partnership (EHS-CCP) grants has been very fast paced. Proposals are due Friday, November 30, just four days away. Below, we offer a few tips for how to maximize the last few days and ensure timely submission of your proposal.
Log in to grants.gov and establish your workspace. If you haven’t already, we strongly encourage you to log in to grants.gov. Find the EHS Expansion and EHS-CCP grant opportunity and establish a workspace through which you will submit your application. If you have trouble setting up a workspace then contact the grants.gov help desk as soon as possible (1-800-518-4726), because it could take 24-48 hours to resolve issues. Do not wait until the last minute to set up your workspace.
Start your data entry. At this point in the process you likely have some information you can start to enter into grants.gov. Do you know your proposed service locations? You could start by entering those. Remember, when you’re entering service locations you’ll need 9-digit zip codes. Find them now so that you’re not scrambling for them later. If you’re budget is ready, you could also start to populate the fields in the 424 and 424-A forms.
Close holes in the narrative and copy edit. With only a few days left you’re likely putting the finishing touches on your application. It’s important to resolve pending issues and close out placeholders in the narrative. Any last-minute decisions need to be brought to resolution. A strong copy edit is an important element of ensuring a high quality proposal and we recommend this as one of your last steps before submission.
Prepare your appendix file. You might be waiting on a few appendix items for your second file. Even so, we recommend compiling your appendix into a single document. Use placeholder documents for any items you’re waiting on and then swap them out as soon as they’re available.
Make your compliance with the page limit clear. Make sure you’re within the 150-page limit between the first file (narrative) and second file (appendix). Numbering the appendix file is a helpful way to show reviewers you’re within the limit. For example, if your narrative ends on page 79 then start the page numbering in the appendix file at page 80. If you have the page space, use a table of contents in your appendix file.
If your program anticipates needing start up or implementation support please feel free to be in touch. We would be glad to discuss the types of support offered by our skilled consultants. Foundations for Families team members have successfully provided start up and fiscal consulting to Round 1 and Round 2 grantees and we would be glad to extend that same support to Round 3 grantees.
Best of luck to everyone submitting a proposal!