During the first round of the Healthy Beginnings, Active Futures Grant, Charlotte Phelps of Charlotte’s Child Care in Adams County requested and was awarded $500 to improve the quality of her outdoor learning environment. This project shows you don’t need to spend a lot of money to improve an outdoor learning space. Read her letter below.

To: Qualistar,

Thank you so much for the grant to help my child care program achieve this beautiful play area. My students are now able to play outdoors all year round riding their trikes, cars, playing basketball, running, jumping, and so much more. All my students and little learners love it so much.

These outside play mats have been a blessing to my program and the students enrolled here. The parents also love them, knowing that their child will have more outside time all year round in a cleaner safer environment.  Not only are these mats great for the children to move around on, but they also help create a great environment for a healthy beginning and more active future. They also love the bright colors!  With the bright beautiful colorful mats, the students and little learners seem to want to play their own version of hopscotch on them.

I cannot express enough how thankful I am that you took the time to consider my program for this awesome grant that has changed our lives and the way our little learners engage and interact with their peers in such an amazing new environment.

Sincerely,

Charlotte Phelps

Owner/Charlottes Child Care

In a state known for physical fitness and outdoor activity, data show that nearly a third of Colorado’s children are not physically active on a regular basis. Qualistar, has partnered with the Colorado Health Foundation to offer the Healthy Beginnings, Active Futures grant to assist early childhood education programs in making improvements to playgrounds and outdoor play spaces, redesign and replace expensive playground surfacing and equipment, build new, high-quality outdoor environments, and invest in health and safety-related improvements to existing outdoor play spaces.

We will accept applications from licensed non-profit providers, privately owned for-profit providers, family child care providers, and preschools that are committed to reducing childhood obesity, increasing active play and physical activity, and increasing the social cohesion within and around active play spaces.

During our winter round of the Healthy Beginnings, Active Futures Grant, we received over 100 applications from across the state. We awarded 16 grants to improve the outdoor learning environments of early childhood education programs in 12 counties impacting over 900 children. The next due date for the Healthy Beginnings, Active Futures Grant will be April 20th, 2018 by 5:00 p.m.

Starting in 2018, The Healthy Beginnings, Active Futures Grant will hold two funding rounds. This will allow us to impact more programs during each round. We will also be evaluating applications from center-based programs separately from Family Child Care providers.

Technical assistance webinars will be separate as well. When registering for a technical assistance webinar, please ensure you are registering for the correct one. If you are interested in joining a technical assistance webinar to learn more about this grant and get answers to questions you may have, please visit our website to register. Upcoming dates for the webinar are:

February 8th, March 9th, March 30th, and April 12th.