Needed for Implementation

Organizations, communities, or states that are looking to establish Child First sites need to plan for start-up and sustainability funding.

Start-up funding

  • Operational costs including establishing data systems (utilization of the Child First local management system, if desired, and connecting to the Child First cross-site database, purchasing equipment (computers, tablets, copier, etc.), furniture.
  • Child First programmatic costs including published assessment measures, reference books, toys, etc.
  • Costs of personnel: A start-up Child First site optimally requires four teams (but a minimum of two teams) made up of a Mental Health/Developmental Clinician and a Care Coordinator and a Clinical Director who supervises the teams. A full-time Clinical Director can oversee four to seven teams. In addition, sites need both administrative support and data entry/tracking support.
  • Child First Start-up fees which cover:
  •  Learning Collaborative training costs including cost of Child First trainers, travel, site location, food.
  • Reflective consultation on-site (whenever possible) or by web or phone

Sustainability funding

  • Personnel costs
  • Operational costs
  • Data systems and tracking
  • Annual Child First network fee which covers part of the cost of:
  • Site visits by Child First Leadership
  • Quarterly trainings
  • Annual Conference


Potential sources for both start-up and ongoing funding, include, but are not limited to:

  • The Maternal Infant Early Childhood Home Visiting (MIECHV) Program included in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act – is an important source for start-up and initial operating income. Funding is targeted for high need communities as defined in state MIECHV plans. All states are receiving Formula funding through FY2015. In FY2013, additional competitive funding will be available for development and expansion of home visiting programs in states.
  • Private Philanthropy: National and local foundations have been important supporters for start-up of Child First sites.
  • Medicaid: In Connecticut, Child First was authorized in 2005 to bill Medicaid under the Rehabilitation option. EPSDT is currently being explored as another Medicaid option.
  • Other possible federal sources:
  • Grants: Project LAUNCH (SAMHSA), Child Mental Health Initiative ( SAMHSA), Promise Neighborhoods (SAMHSA)
  • Child Abuse and Protection Treatment Act (CAPTA)
  • Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA Parts B and C)
  • Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF)

With funding from: