Applying for Support:

If you are a current in-home or child care center provider, someone who is interested in starting child care or a business or location that would like to host or create a child care opportunity the Kandiyohi County Child Care Project is created to support you.

Currently, you can complete the Forgivable Loan Application 6.14, Language Accommodation Application, Technology Assistance Application, Transportation Application you can learn more about how to access the other support umbrellas below.

Full grant details are on the bottom of the page. 

Have application questions? 

Take a look at Child Care Economic Development Grant FAQ sheet. 

Areas of Grant Support: 

The grant dollars will be delivered in six main umbrellas of projects.

  1. Forgivable Loans & Fee Reimbursements

Forgivable loans will be available to support child care expenses for current child care providers looking to expand or those who are currently working to achieve licensing. This includes educational materials, equipment, items that address safety, and much more.

Follow the instructions and complete the Forgivable Loan Application 6.14 to access these funds. 

Fee reimbursements will be communicated directly to child care providers as they continue to be developed. 

Want some tips on completing this application? Take a look at the Information Sheet, Frequently Asked Questions, Forgivable Loan Application Tips.

  1. Mentorship Program

This program will match those who are new or planning on entering child care with those who are established providers. The mentors will receive a stipend for participation and will work with the RCCIP Team to establish the length and detailed specifics of the mentorship program.

If you are interested in being a mentor or receiving mentorship please call the EDC at (320) 235-7370 or email Sarah Swedburg at [email protected] or [email protected]. This program will continue to grow and be developed. 

  1. Employee Assistance Program (EAP)

The EAP will establish free mental health support for providers and child care center staff with Woodland Centers.

If you would like to access this program please contact Michelle Marotzke at  (320) 287-1737 or by emailing [email protected]. This program will continue to grow and be developed. 

  1. Transportation

The ability to have a yearly license and other necessary fees reimbursed will be covered under this umbrella. There will also be the creation of a transportation token system that would support centers and providers being able to take children on outings.

We will be communicating direct fee reimbursement payments as this program develops. 

Complete the Transportation Application to gain assistance.

  1. Training

This RCCIP Team will work to identify, conduct or host and promote training that meets state requirements for providers. This will include technical support as the state system transitions to fully online and no longer a paper one.

The EDC will communicate training opportunities as this program continues to grow and be developed. As the county and state near going 100% digital for licensing and reporting you may find that you have technical assistance needs. You can find the Technology Assistance Application here. 

  1. Language Accommodation

Language Accommodation services can be applied in a variety of ways. This includes providing assistances for those navigating the child care licensing process in a language other than spoken English (ASL, Somali, Spanish, etc.), supporting the creation of diverse child care opportunities. They can utilized to translate a providers policies or other documents and assist between parent and child care communication. 

The Language Accommodation Application can be downloaded and completed here. 

What is the grant?

The EDC, along with support from the Mid-Minnesota Development Commission applied for the Child Care Economic Development Grant from the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development in the fall of 2022. As a result, Kandiyohi County was awarded $200,000 to be met with matching funds and applied to child care retention and creation within the county. Kandiyohi County will support the project with $150,000 and the City of Willmar matching with $100,000. Other cities and townships in the county have been invited to financially support the grant through matching dollars as well. In addition, we received $30,000 from First Children’s Finance as additional award funds. The EDC wants to thank all of our partners for their contributions leading up to the grant award.  

The Kandiyohi County Child Care Project has three key goals:

  1. Increase child care slots throughout Kandiyohi County
  2. Provide support and resources for new and existing providers to decrease the number of providers exiting the field
  3. Create opportunities for all Kandiyohi County providers to grow their child care services.

The organization of the grant and work will be overseen by the local Rural Child Care Innovation Program Team. The (RCCIP) team consists of 30 core members from a variety of private, public, government, and non-profits leaders. These teams will divide into smaller, more specialized task groups for program delivery.


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