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Mental Health Supports (K-3) Funding Priority

Mental Health Supports (K-3) Funding Priority

Total funding available: Up to $250,000 per year
Multiple grants are expected
Grant period may be one, two or three years, depending on need and program design

For additional information or questions please contact Emily Francis, United Way's community impact manager at (814) 456-2937 ext. 235 or email


  • Services must be delivered at the school
  • Services must address one or more of the identified priority needs (below)
  • Services must directly or indirectly impact the entire school population
  • Requests for start-up funds will be prioritized over requests including ongoing expenses
  • Applicants must meet United Way’s Eligibility and Funding Requirements
  • Funding will only be aligned with elementary community schools
    • Edison Elementary School (Erie’s Public Schools)
    • McKinley Elementary School (Erie’s Public Schools)
    • Pfeiffer-Burleigh Elementary School (Erie’s Public Schools)
    • Elk Valley Elementary School (Girard School District)
    • Iroquois Elementary School (Iroquois School District)

Steps to Apply

Step One: United Way Issues a Request for Information (RFI)

Due to the complexity of delivering mental health supports in a school setting, there will be several steps to this process before final grant decisions are made. This begins with a Request for Information (RFI) to identify the available mental health supports applicable to student needs in our community.  United Way invites eligible organizations/entities in Erie County to submit a response. 

All interested organizations are invited to attend one of the grant workshops at United Way on January 12 at 2:00pm or January 23 at 2:00pm. You must RSVP to attend.

Responses to the RFI must be submitted no later than 12:00pm on Friday, January 26.

Step Two: Request for Information Review

Due to the specificity of needs at each of the community schools, responses to the RFIs will be reviewed to determine how the programs/services align with the needs identified in the Campaign for Grade-Level Reading Community Solutions Action Plan, as well as the specific community school action plans. 

Specifically, the priority needs identified in the Community Solutions Action Plan and the community school action plans are as follows:

  • Develop systems and supports that focus on prevention, identification and resolution of behavioral concerns (age-appropriate social, anger management, conflict resolution, problem solving, bullying prevention, and/or healthy relationships skills)
  • Providing mental health treatment services for students and families

This review will utilize this scorecard.

Step Three: Request for Proposals

After the review of RFI responses, those organizations with services applicable to school needs will be invited to submit a funding proposal.  As part of this process, applicants will have a chance to meet with United Way staff to receive input and ask questions that may help inform their applications. Applicants will also be invited to attend a training session to become familiar with e-CImpact, United Way’s community impact software.  Site visits may be required, if requested.

Step Four: Proposal Review and Scoring

After applicants have submitted their proposals, they will be reviewed and scored by a committee consisting of United Way and community school personnel, as well as local subject matter experts, without a conflict of interest.  The review committee will have the ability to ask applicants questions electronically throughout its review process. 

However, all applicants are required to attend an in-person, 15-20 minute question and answer session with the review committee the week of May 7. This will be an opportunity for the committee to ask any final questions and for the applicants to provide additional information. The appropriate staff from the major collaborators and a representative from the lead applicant’s board of directors are required to attend this meeting. We recommend applicants bring no more than five people to this meeting. 

Step Five: Planning Phase

Once a proposal is approved for funding, a planning phase will commence between the applicant, United Way staff, relevant school personnel and other relevant stakeholders to align the service with one or more schools. This planning phase would start in July 2018. Funding would be available as soon as the funding agreement is executed.

Step Six: Implementation Phase

Once funding is released, applicants will be expected to adhere to any meeting or reporting requirements detailed in the funding agreement.


January 8, 2018

Request for Information issued

January 12, 2018

RFI/RFP Q&A at United Way (optional) @ 2:00PM

January 23, 2018

RFI/RFP Q&A  at United Way (optional) @ 2:00PM

January 26, 2018

Deadline for responses to the Request for Information

February 26, 2018

Selected RFP applicants announced; Applications released

February 28-March 16, 2018

RFP pre-application meetings with United Way staff

March 19 – March 30, 2018

Site visits (if applicable)

March 19 – March 30, 2018

Grant software training (optional)

April 6, 2018 @ Noon

Deadline for RFP responses

May 7 -May 11, 2018

Mandatory meeting with review committee (at United Way)

June 27, 2018

United Way Board meeting to review and approve funding recommendations

June 28, 2018

Funding decisions announced

For additional information or questions please contact Emily Francis, United Way's community impact manager at (814) 456-2937 ext. 235 or email