Funding Opportunities

1: Vermont Mentoring Grants

MENTOR Vermont envisions a future in which every young person in Vermont has the supportive mentoring relationships they need to grow and develop into thriving, productive, and engaged adults. In order to achieve this goal, we have collaborated with our funding partners to create the Vermont Mentoring Grants. With funding support from the A.D. Henderson Foundation, The Vermont Community Foundation (funded in 2020 through the COVID-19 Response Fund), and the Vermont Department for Children and Families, MENTOR Vermont strives to support, expand, and enhance the quality of existing mentoring programs, while also to helping to establish new adult-to-youth mentoring programs. We support this critical work by making grants and providing technical assistance, with the ultimate goal of sustainably increasing the quality and quantity of mentoring matches statewide.

The 2020-2021 Vermont Mentoring Grant Process is Now Open!
Download the RFP Here

This grant opportunity is designed to fund the first-year implementation of a new mentoring program or established one-to-one adult-to-youth mentoring programs serving youth in Vermont that are run by nonprofit organizations and schools. With remote learning and social distancing orders affecting the lives of young people and limiting their connections with caring adults, now is a critical time to maintain relationships between mentors and mentees. This grant round will help mentoring organizations around the state continue to adapt to COVID-19 and safely provide services.

Eligible programs will:

  • Operate at least 25 weeks of programming a year.
  • Have matches that meet in-person or are mentoring via remote means (i.e. mail, email, text message, phone, and/or video chat) due to safety concerns in regard to COVID-19, but strive to resume in-person mentoring when the mentee’s family, mentor, and program decide it is safe to do so.
  • Meet at minimum one hour a week or four hours a month (depending on program model) when matches are safely able to meet in person and consistent and sustained communication for matches that are mentoring remotely due to COVID-19 safety concerns.
  • Meet best practices as defined by The Elements of Effective Practice for Mentoring and MENTOR Vermont’s Quality Mentoring System.

2020-2021 Vermont Mentoring Grants Timeline:

  • June 1, 2020: RFP Released
  • June 12, 2020: Email of intent to apply due
  • June 22 – July 31, 2020: Pre-grant writing meetings (most likely done via GoToMeeting)
  • August 7, 2020: Grant applications due
  • August 31, 2020: Grant decision letters sent out
  • September 1, 2020: Start of grant year and funds released (if available) once signed grant agreement is received
  • January 15, 2021: Interim grant reports due
  • May 31, 2021: End of grant year
  • June 15, 2021: Year-end reports due  

If you have questions about applying for a future grant in 2020-2021, please contact [email protected] to learn more.

Previous Funding Cycles:

 
 

2: OJJDP COVID-19 Response Grants

MENTOR Vermont: OJJDP Mentoring Opportunities for Youth Initiative – COVID-19 Response Funding

ISSUE DATE: May 4, 2020
BIDDERS’ CONFERENCE: May 8, 2020: Watch the Recording
QUESTIONS DUE BY: May 12, 2020
RFP RESPONSES DUE BY: May 20, 2020 and 4:30 PM

Download the Full RFP HERE
Responses to Bidders’ RFP Questions

Summary: In the fall of 2019, the Vermont Department of Children and Families (DCF) received a three-year, $1.25 million OJJDP Mentoring Opportunities for Youth Initiative Category 5 grant (OJJDP grant). DCF made a sub-award to MENTOR Vermont to manage the delivery of mentoring programming to underserved rural communities inordinately impacted by the opioid epidemic in four regions of Vermont, the Northeast, Northwest, Southeast, and Southwest, which includes nine counties: Bennington, Caledonia, Essex, Orleans, Franklin, Grand Isle, Rutland, Windham, and Windsor. The original grant goal was to provide evidence-informed mentoring services to rural youth (ages 6 to 17) with Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACES) and other known risk factors for substance abuse, including poverty, and to increase the number of active mentoring matches in the regions mentioned above by 200 over three years.

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, MENTOR Vermont and DCF are reallocating the first portion of this funding toward one-time response grants to mentoring agencies in these counties to fund match support to existing adult-to-youth mentor matches and build organizational capacity and develop organizational improvements to ensure their program(s) can not only maintain the number of mentor matches during this time of physical distancing but help the organization to be poised to expand their program(s) once social distancing guidelines are lifted and in-person mentoring can resume. 

Respondents should meet the following criteria:

  1. Operate an existing adult-to-youth one-to-one mentoring program
  2. Meet best practices as outlined in the Quality Mentoring System
  3. Provide mentoring services in one or more of the following counties: Bennington, Caledonia, Essex, Orleans, Franklin, Grand Isle, Rutland, Windham, and Windsor

The maximum award amount is $50,000. The award period is June 1, 2020 through September 30, 2020. Funds are contingent on final approval from OJJDP for MENTOR Vermont and DCF’s change of scope request. All sub-grantees will be required to meet all OJJDP Special Conditions

Any potential bidder requiring clarification of any section of this RFP or wishing to comment on any requirement of the RFP must submit specific questions in writing by May 12, 2020.

A non-mandatory bidder’s conference was held via GoToMeeting on May 8, 2020. You can watch the recording of the conference here.

Proposals are due by 4:30 p.m. on May 20, 2020.

MENTOR Vermont would like to thank Senator Patrick Leahy and his staff for all of their support in helping MENTOR Vermont and DCF gain access to this federal funding opportunity! After several years of advocacy work led by Senator Leahy’s office, the OJJDP Mentoring Opportunities for Youth Initiative grant criteria was adjusted to enable individual state governments to apply for funding, through a new category dedicated to supporting rural communities inordinately impacted by the opioid crisis. Without the existence of this new category, this grant would not have been possible.

3: OJJDP - Mentoring Opportunities for Youth Initiative (2020-2022)

MENTOR Vermont: OJJDP Mentoring Opportunities for Youth Initiative

ISSUE DATE: September 10, 2020
BIDDER CONFERENCE: September 16, 2020 – 10:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.
QUESTIONS DUE BY: September 18, 2020
RFP RESPONSES DUE BY: Thursday, October 1, 2020 at 4:30 p.m.

Download the Full RFP HERE
Responses to Bidder Questions will Appear Here

Summary: This Request for Proposals (RFP) is for competitive proposals to be funded through the Vermont Department for Children and Families’ (DCF) OJJDP grant. This RFP is published and administered by MENTOR Vermont, with the approval and consultation of DCF. This grant program will run from October 15, 2020 through August 31, 2022.

MENTOR Vermont is requesting proposals from existing mentoring programs in the following regions of Vermont: Northeast, Northwest, Southeast, and Southwest, which includes nine counties: Bennington, Caledonia, Essex, Franklin, Grand Isle, Orleans, Rutland, Windham, and Windsor, to address the needs of communities inordinately impacted by the opioid epidemic in those regions, by providing evidence-informed mentoring services to rural youth (ages 6 to 17) with Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACES) and other known risk factors for substance abuse, including poverty.

This RFP is intended to fund match support to new adult-to-youth (ages 6 to 17) mentor matches, enhance mentor training, increase engagement with families, and implement organizational improvements to enable mentoring program(s) to grow and increase the number of youth served who are inordinately impacted by the opioid epidemic across Vermont. By providing financial support to new matches across the state, MENTOR Vermont is directly working toward its mission of providing resources and support to youth mentoring agencies, so they can meet the needs of young people in their communities, and its vision for every young person in Vermont having the supportive mentoring relationship they need to grow and develop into thriving, productive, and engaged adults.

Respondents must meet the following criteria:

  1. Operate an existing adult-to-youth, one-to-one mentoring program
  2. Meet best practices as outlined in the Elements of Effective Practice for Mentoring
  3. Have successfully completed the Quality Mentoring System (QMS) review process with MENTOR Vermont within the last three years or will do so within one year of receipt of the agreement. Respondents will renew on time and according to the every-three-year review schedule.
  4. Provide mentoring services in one or more of the following counties: Bennington, Caledonia, Essex, Franklin, Grand Isle, Orleans, Rutland, Windham, and Windsor.

Respondents must demonstrate or agree to:

  1. Ability and willingness to measure required performance measurements.
  2. Confidence in ability to achieve desired measurement results.
  3. Commitment to timely and thorough, regular reporting to MENTOR Vermont.
  4. Collaboration with DCF and its district offices, the Department of Health (Regional Prevention Partnerships), and other agencies within the “hub and spoke” system for youth referrals, resources for families, and mentor training.
  5. Screen all mentors funded by this grant with FBI-fingerprint based background checks.

Special Considerations: It is of great importance to the RFP review committee that agencies are intentional with capacity building and match support, giving significant attention to how agencies will sustain and ensure success of matches once this funding expires. The committee will prioritize proposals that demonstrate a clear vision for how organizations will address this challenge, particularly in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic. Additionally, the RFP review committee will prioritize organizations that have a close affiliation with substance abuse prevention programs, have previously partnered with MENTOR Vermont, have a proven track record of meeting grant goals and reporting requirements, and have demonstrated the ability to appropriately handle Federal funding.

Award Details:
There is no minimum or maximum grant award sum, but there is a minimum funded new match count of 20. The award period is October 15, 2020 through August 31, 2022. MENTOR Vermont will provide up to $4,000 per new match, that should be budgeted to support new matches for the duration of the grant period. Agencies must make a compelling case for their per match costs. 

Agencies receiving funding from both the Vermont Mentoring Grants and the OJJDP Mentoring Opportunities for Youth Initiative must determine which grant funds they wish to use for each match. Agencies may not use OJJDP funding to support matches funded by the Vermont Mentoring Grants. All sub-grantees will be required to meet all OJJDP Special Conditions

A non-mandatory bidder conference will be held on Zoom on September 16, from 10:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. To request a link to attend the conference, email [email protected]. This conference will also be recorded and available on this page within 48 hours of completion.

Any potential bidder requiring clarification of any section of this RFP or wishing to comment on any requirement of the RFP must submit specific questions in writing by September 18, 2020.

Proposals are due by 4:30 p.m. on October 1, 2020.

MENTOR Vermont would like to thank Senator Patrick Leahy and his staff for all of their support in helping MENTOR Vermont and DCF gain access to this federal funding opportunity! After several years of advocacy work led by Senator Leahy’s office, the OJJDP Mentoring Opportunities for Youth Initiative grant criteria was adjusted to enable individual state governments to apply for funding, through a new category dedicated to supporting rural communities inordinately impacted by the opioid crisis. Without the existence of this new category, this grant would not have been possible.