Funding Opportunities

1: Closed: 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 thrive. 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 and the Vermont Department for Children and Families, MENTOR Vermont strives to support, expand, and enhance the quality of existing mentoring programs, while also helping to establish new youth mentoring programs. We support this critical work by grantmaking and providing technical assistance, with the ultimate goal of sustainably increasing the quality and quantity of mentoring matches statewide.

The 2023-2024 Vermont Mentoring Grant Application Process is currently closed.

You can view the full 2023-2024 Vermont Mentoring Grants RFP for more information.  


If you have questions about this year’s Vermont Mentoring Grants or applying for a future grant, please contact [email protected] for further assistance.


2: Closed: OJJDP - Mentoring Opportunities for Youth Initiative (2020-2023)

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. Watch the Recording & View the Presentation Slides
QUESTIONS DUE BY: September 18, 2020
RFP RESPONSES DUE BY: Thursday, October 1, 2020 at 4:30 p.m.

Download the Full RFP HERE
View Responses to Bidder Questions

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, 2023.

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 youth-adult (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, 2023. 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

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.