Illinois Department of Labor
Illinois Department of Human Services

Released September 8, 2014

Services for Youth Development Programming Request for Applications (RFA)

  1. PART I
    1. Date of Issuance: September 8, 2014
    2. Issuing Organizational Unit
    3. RFA Availability
    4. Date, Location and Time of Application Opening
    5. Application Submission Requirements
    6. Format Requirements
    7. Eligible Applicants
    8. Questions and Answers
    9. Award Process
    10. Review Panel
    11. Estimated Length of Agreement
    12. Withdrawal Disclaimer
    13. Modifications to RFA by DHS
    14. Clarifications, Negotiations or Discussions Initiated by DHS
    15. Commencement of Service
    16. Public Information
    17. Contract
    18. Training and Technical Assistance
    19. Deliverables
    20. Congressional and Legislative Districts
    21. Additional Information
    22. Sectarian Issue
    23. Background Checks
    24. Child Abuse/Neglect Reporting Mandate
    25. Hiring and Employment Policy
    26. Payment Method
  2. PART II
    1. A. NEED FOR SERVICES
    2. B. SERVICE CLASSIFICATION 1: OUT-OF-SCHOOL TIME PROGRAMMING
      1. Goals to be Achieved
      2. 1. CORE SERVICES -
      3. 2. TARGET POPULATION -
      4. 3. DAYS AND HOURS OF OPERATION -
      5. 4. ENROLLMENT AND ATTENDANCE -
      6. 5. ASSESSMENT OF COMMUNITY NEED -
      7. 6. COMMUNITY-CENTERED PROGRAMMING -
      8. 7. TRAINING AND TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE -
      9. 8. PROGRAM EVALUATION -
      10. 9. SNACKS AND MEALS -
      11. 10. TRANSPORTATION -
      12. 11. COLLABORATION -
      13. 12. APPLICATION SCORING -
        1. a) Executive Summary (1 page maximum) - Not scored
        2. b) Organization Qualifications / Organizational Capacity (35 points)
        3. c) Program Plan (30 points)
        4. d) Target Population / Community Needs (25 points)
        5. e) Fiscal Capabilities (10 points)
    3. B. SERVICE CLASSIFICATION 2: YOUTH EMPLOYMENT
      1. 1. CORE SERVICES
      2. 2. MANDATORY REQUIREMENTS OF APPLICANTS -
      3. 3. ALLOWABLE COSTS -
      4. 4. APPLICATION SCORING -
    4. C. SERVICE CLASSIFICATION 3: EVIDENCE-BASED DEMONSTRATION PROJECTS SUPPORTING YOUTH AND FAMILIES

Appendix 1 - Spending Plan Instructions and Allowable Costs

Appendix 2 - Application and Plan for Human Services Program Cover Sheet and Instructions

Appendix 3 - Example of DHS Community Services Agreement & Exhibits 

PART I

  1. Date of Issuance: September 8, 2014

  2. Issuing Organizational Unit

    • Illinois Department of Human Services
      Division of Family and Community Services
    • Contact Person
      Dan Harris, Assistant Director
      Division of Family and Community Services
      Illinois Department of Human Services
      401 S. Clinton, 4th Floor
      Chicago, IL 60607
      daniel.g.harris@illinois.gov
  3. RFA Availability

    • Copies of this Request for Applications (RFA) may be downloaded from the Illinois Department of Human Services (DHS or the Department) web site: http://www.dhs.state.il.us . Please click on "For Providers" and then on "RFAs." Additional copies may be obtained by contacting the contact person listed above.
  4. Date, Location and Time of Application Opening

    • Applications are to be received no later than 4:00 p.m. on October 6, 2014. The application container will be time-stamped upon receipt. The Department will not accept applications submitted by electronic mail or by facsimile machine. Mail or have your completed grant applications delivered to:
    • Illinois Department of Human Services
      "Sealed Bid - Do Not Open"
      2015 DOL/DHS RFA
      401 S. Clinton, 4th Floor
      Chicago, IL 60607
      Due Date & Time: October 6, 2014 at 4:00 pm
      Applications may be personally dropped off at the above listed site by the due date and time.
  5. Application Submission Requirements

    • To be considered, Applications must be in the possession of the Department of Human Services staff at the specified location and by the designated date and time listed above. Applications received after the submittal date will be considered for funding and reviewed only if funding remains available after review and grant award of timely submittals.
    • APPLICATIONS THAT ARE FAXED OR HANDWRITTEN WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED AND WILL BE IMMEDIATELY DISQUALIFIED.
      • Type application on 8 1/2 x 11-inch paper using 12-point type and at 100% magnification (not reduced).
      • With the exception of letterhead and stationery for letter(s) of support, the entire Application should be typed in black ink on white paper.
      • Single-spaced, on one side of the page, with 1-inch margins on all sides.
      • The entire application, including appendices, must be sequentially page numbered.
      • Applications should be bound with a single staple or binder clip in the upper left-hand corner.
      • Please do not use any other form of binding, including ring binders, spiral binders, report covers or rubber bands as well as subject dividers or tabs to extend beyond the 8 1/2 x 11 inch page.
    • Applicants must submit one clearly identified original, signed proposal and two (2) complete copies of the proposal. Faxed copies will not be accepted. The Department is under no obligation to review applications that do not comply with the above requirements.
    • Please note that Part II of this RFA details three separate service classifications:
      • Service Classification 1: Out-of-school time programming
      • Service Classification 2: Youth employment
      • Service Classification 3: Evidence-based demonstration projects supporting youth and families
    • Applicants may submit proposals for more than one service classification, but each proposal must be submitted as a separate application.
  6. Format Requirements

    • As explained in Part II of this RFA, applicants may submit applications for any of three separate service classifications. Each individual application should not exceed 10 pages, including the Executive Summary, Agency Qualifications, Methodology, and Work Plan. The cover page, checklist, spending plan and narrative, linkage agreements, subcontractor information, attachments and any included letters of support are not included in the page limitations.
  7. Eligible Applicants

    • Public or private, not-for-profit community-based agencies are eligible to apply for funds under this Request for Application. Applicant must be in good standing with the Secretary of State and must not be debarred or suspended for state or federally funded grants. The applicant must disclose any instances of debt owed to the state or federal agency, for grant recovery, improper payments, questioned cost as a result of an audit. The funding opportunity is not limited to those who currently receive funding from the Illinois Department of Human Services.
  8. Questions and Answers

    • Each applicant must have access to the Internet. The Department's website will contain information regarding the RFA. It is the responsibility of each applicant to monitor that website and comply with any instructions or requirements relating to the RFA.
    • Submit questions relating to the RFA via email to daniel.g.harris@illinois.gov .
      Indicate "DOL/DHS RFA-Question" in the subject line of the email. Only written answers to written questions will be considered valid; questions and answers will be posted on the DHS website, located at http://www.dhs.state.il.us/page.aspx?item=39157 . The site will be updated periodically.
    • The last day to submit a question is September 29, 2014.
  9. Award Process

    • It is anticipated that applicants will receive notifications by the Department regarding funding decisions in October 2014. A Notice of Grant Award is not equivalent to an agreement with the Department to commence providing service. Successful applicants should receive the Community Service Agreement for their signature and return it per instructions to be provided. The release of the RFA does not obligate the Illinois Department of Human Services to make an award. Work cannot begin until a contract is fully executed by the Department.
  10. Review Panel

    • Applications will be reviewed by staff from DHS, who will read and evaluate applications independently and may subsequently participate in meetings during which applications will be reviewed and scored collectively.
    • The Department reserves the right to consider factors other than the Applicant's final score in determining final grant recommendations. Such factors may include (but are not limited to) geographic service area, Applicant's past performance, or degree of need for service.
  11. Estimated Length of Agreement

    • The Department estimates that the term of the agreement resulting from this RFA will be eight months, beginning November 1, 2014, and continuing through June 30, 2015.
  12. Withdrawal Disclaimer

    • The Department of Human Services may withdraw this Request for Applications at any time prior to the actual time a fully executed agreement is filed with the State of Illinois Comptroller's Office.
  13. Modifications to RFA by DHS

    • If it becomes necessary or appropriate for DHS to change any part of the RFA, a modification to the RFA will be available from the Department's website, found at http://www.dhs.state.il.us .
  14. Clarifications, Negotiations or Discussions Initiated by DHS

    • The Department may contact any applicant prior to the final award for the following purposes:
    • As part of the Department's review process, the Department may request an applicant clarify its bid or Application. An applicant may not be allowed to materially change its bid or application in response to a request for clarification.
    • Discussions may be held to promote understanding of the Department's requirements and the applicant's Application and to facilitate arriving at a contract that will be most advantageous to the State considering price and other evaluation factors set forth in the RFA.
    • When the Department knows or has reason to conclude that a mistake has been made, the Department shall ask the Applicant to confirm the information. Situations in which confirmation should be requested include obvious or apparent errors on the face of the document.
  15. Commencement of Service

    • The Department will not reimburse applicants for expenses incurred prior to the complete and final execution of the written contract. If the applicant receives an award letter from the Secretary, then it is reasonable to assume that the Department will be forwarding the Applicant a contract. No services can be reimbursed prior to the full and complete execution of the contract and filing with the Illinois Office of the Comptroller.
  16. Public Information

    • Some information submitted pursuant to the RFA is subject to the Illinois Freedom of Information Act. The successful applicant must recognize and accept that any material marked proprietary or confidential that must be made a part of the contract may be considered open for public inspection. Price information submitted by the successful Applicants shall be considered public.
    • Applicants' scores will not be made public. The Department may give Applicants feedback about their Application upon request and at the discretion of the Department.
  17. Contract

    • The legal agreement between DHS and the successful applicants will be in the form and format prescribed by DHS. The standard DHS Community Service Agreement (CSA) will be used as a grant agreement. Samples of this agreement may be found at http://www.dhs.state.il.us/page  and in an Appendix of this RFA. If selected for funding, the applicant will be provided a DHS Community Service Agreement for their signature and return. Applicants must review the sample CSA and insure that they meet all requirements contained in the CSA. Applicants must note any exceptions contained in the CSA. All exceptions must be agreed to by DHS before awarding any grants and execution of the CSA.
  18. Training and Technical Assistance

    • Programs must agree to receive consultation technical assistance from authorized representatives of the Department. The program and collaborating partners will be required to be in attendance at site visits.
  19. Deliverables

    • Successful applicants will be required to provide the following information to the Department as grantees:
    • Monthly Expenditure Documentation Forms (EDFs), in a format provided by the Department.
    • Program plan and detailed program budget in format provided by the Department.
    • Agency budget in a format provided by the Department.
    • Performance data as requested by the Department.
  20. Congressional and Legislative Districts

    • The applicant must provide on the required Application and Plan for Human Services Program (cover sheet) the Congressional District (by number), available at the following website: http://www.firstgov.gov/Contact/Elected.shtml ; and the Illinois House and Senate Legislative Districts (by number), available on the Illinois General Assembly website at http://www.ilga.gov .
  21. Additional Information

    • The Department reserves the right to request additional information that could assist with its award decision. Applicants are expected to provide the additional information within a reasonable period of time. Failure to provide the information could result in the rejection of the application.
  22. Sectarian Issue

    • Applicant organizations may not expend federal or state funds for sectarian instruction, worship, prayer, or to proselytize. If the applicant organization is a faith-based or a religious organization that offers such activities, these activities shall be voluntary for the individuals receiving services and offered separately from the program.
  23. Background Checks

    • Background checks are required for all program staff and volunteers who have the potential for one-on-one contact with children and youth. Funded programs will be required to have a written protocol on file requiring background checks, as well as evidence of their completion.
  24. Child Abuse/Neglect Reporting Mandate

    • Per the Abused and Neglected Child Reporting Act (ANCRA, 325 ILCS 5/4), mandated reporters are professionals who may work with children in the course of their professional duties. Mandated reporters are required to report suspected child maltreatment immediately when they have "reasonable cause to believe" that a child known to them in their professional or official capacity may be an abused or neglected child" (ANCRA Sec.4). This is done by calling the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) Hotline at 1-800-252-2873 or 1-800-25ABUSE. Programs funded through this grant opportunity must review ANCRA and, where appropriate, have a written protocol for identifying and reporting suspected child maltreatment.
  25. Hiring and Employment Policy

    • It is the policy of the Department to encourage cultural diversity in the work environment and to promote employment opportunities through its programs. The Department philosophy is that the program workforce should appropriately reflect the populations to be served, with special attention given to hiring individuals indigenous to those communities. Consistent with Department policy, whenever a position becomes available, funded programs are encouraged to consider TANF clients for employment, contingent upon their qualifications in the areas of education and work experience.
  26. Payment Method

    • Payments to successful programs shall be made on a prospective basis. Expenditures must be consistent with the agency's approved spending plan on file with the Department. Actual expenditures incurred for the purchase of allowable goods and services necessary for conducting program activities shall be documented, utilizing the Department's Expenditure Documentation Form for reconciliation against the approved budget and total award amount. Unexpended funds will be returned to the Department, per the Grant Funds Recovery process.

PART II

A. NEED FOR SERVICES

The State recognizes the critical need for research-informed, out-of-school time opportunities for youth. The value of such programming is well-documented:

  • The hours between 3 and 6 p.m. are the peak hours for juvenile crime and experimentation with drugs, alcohol, cigarettes and sex. (Fight Crime: Invest in Kids, 2003)
  • Eight in 10 Americans want all children and teens to have some type of organized activity or safe place to go after school. (Afterschool Alliance & Lake Research Partners, 2008)
  • Early childhood education expert James Heckman concludes that a complement of early education and participation in afterschool programs can reduce initiating drug use among youth by nearly 50 percent. (University of Chicago, 2006)
  • An analysis of 68 afterschool studies concluded that high quality afterschool programs can lead to improved attendance, behavior and coursework. Students participating in a high quality afterschool program went to school more, behaved better, received better grades and did better on tests compared to non-participating students. (Durlak, Weissberg, & Pachan, 2010)
  • Teens who do not participate in afterschool programs are nearly three times more likely to skip classes than teens who do participate. They are also three times more likely to use marijuana or other drugs, and are more likely to drink, smoke and engage in sexual activity. (YMCA of the USA, 2001)
  • Parents miss an average of five days of work per year due to a lack of afterschool care. Decreased worker productivity related to parental concerns about afterschool care costs businesses up to $300 billion per year. (Catalyst & Brandeis University, 2006)
  • The Promising Afterschool Programs Study found that regular participation in high-quality afterschool programs is linked to significant gains in standardized test scores and work habits as well as reductions in behavior problems among disadvantaged students. (University of California at Irvine, 2007)
  • Researchers at Johns Hopkins University concluded that two-thirds of the achievement gap between lower- and higher-income youth results from unequal access to summer learning opportunities. (American Sociological Review, 2007)
  • Youth with work experience are significantly more likely to attend college and to have a greater attachment to the labor force as adults. (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2001)
  • Youth unemployment can harm young adults for several years into the future. Those experiencing unemployment at an early age have years of lower earnings and an increased likelihood of unemployment ahead of them (Mroz, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 2001)

In recognition of the need for such programming, the State is seeking applications in three service classifications:

Service Classification 1: Out-of-school time programming

Service Classification 2: Youth employment

Service Classification 3: Evidence-based demonstration projects supporting youth and families

Applicants may submit proposals for more than one service classification, but each proposal must be submitted as a separate application.

B. SERVICE CLASSIFICATION 1: OUT-OF-SCHOOL TIME PROGRAMMING

The Department is seeking proposals from community-based public, private, or not-for-profit agencies to provide out-of-school time programming to at-risk youth. Specifically, the intent of this funding is to serve high-risk communities. Applicants must demonstrate the ability and intent to target services to at-risk youth residing in high-risk communities, as identified through community needs assessments. Resources will be allocated to applicants that have very clearly demonstrated that the funds will be most effectively and efficiently used and will have the greatest impact on at-risk youth living within the community.

Goals to be Achieved

The goal of the out-of-school time programming provided through these funds is to expand the range of choices and opportunities that enable, empower and encourage youth to achieve positive growth and development, improve expectations and capacities for future success, and avoid and/or reduce risk-taking behavior. Specifically, this means providing youth with safe environments and caring adults, and guiding them toward marketable skills.

The program provides the following prevention-focused core services; additional services appropriate to the youth and/or his community may also be provided:

  • Improving academic performance
  • Life skills education
  • Parental involvement
  • Recreation, sports, and cultural and artistic activities
  • Positive adult mentors
  • Service Learning

Services to be Performed (Description of Program) - Following is information about important aspects of this out-of-school time programming:

1. CORE SERVICES -

Programs should include activities in some or all of six core service

areas. The proposed model must demonstrate a clear methodology to achieve the outcomes associated with the targeted core service areas. The proposed model must also demonstrate the capacity to collect the data necessary to monitor and report on the selected outcomes. The core services, the outcomes they are designed to achieve, and the developmental assets that are associated with them are as follows:

  1. Improving Academic Performance -- This includes time to do homework, tutoring in basic skills, and enrichment programs that encourage creativity.
    • Outcomes
      • Participant will maintain or improve school attendance.
      • Participant will maintain or improve grades or progress reporting in school.
      • Participants will develop or improve career aspirations and choices.
    • Developmental assets
      • Participants are actively engaged in learning.
      • Participants are motivated and strive to do well in school
      • Participants are optimistic about a personal future and career
  2. Life Skills Education -- This encompasses training and education that promotes the development of healthy lifestyles, and encourages abstinence from risk-taking behaviors in the areas of alcohol and/or substance use, criminal activity, violence and sexual activity.
    • Outcomes
      • Participants will increase knowledge of harmful effects of substance use and abuse.
      • Participants will increase knowledge of harmful effects of early sexual activity and pregnancy.
      • Participants will increase anger management and conflict resolution skills.
      • Participants will increase decision making and problem solving skills.
      • Participants will increase healthy nutritional choices
    • Developmental assets
      • Participants believe it is important not to use alcohol and other drugs.
      • Participants believe it is important not to be sexually active.
      • Participants seek to resolve conflict nonviolently.
      • Participants know how to plan ahead and make choices
  3. Parental Involvement - Programs must provide opportunities for parents and/or guardians to meet with staff to discuss their children's activities, and to participate in events that strengthen parent/child bonds and community involvement.
    • Outcomes
      • Increase in parental monitoring of academic performance.
      • Increase in understanding of child and adolescent developmental stages and appropriate expectations.
      • Increase in positive and effective communication with children and teens
      • regarding alcohol, tobacco and other drug use, sexual activity, abstinence and other life skills.
      • Increase structured activities that promote positive family interaction
    • Developmental assets
      • Parents are actively involved in helping the child succeed in school.
      • Parents understand child and adolescent developmental stages and have appropriate expectations.
      • Families have clear and consistent rules and consequences.
      • Parents and children communicate positively regarding alcohol, tobacco and other drug use, sexual activity, abstinence and other life skills.
      • Parents foster resilience.
      • Parents plan and spend time in structured activities that promote positive family interaction
  4. Recreation, Sports, and Cultural/Artistic Activities - This includes providing activities and arranging safe outlets for youth to try new skills and develop new interests, to build friendships, find their place in a group, and gain developmentally relevant experiences.
    • Outcomes
      • Provide opportunities for participants to engage in cultural enrichment and fine art activities.
      • Provide opportunities for participants to demonstrate sportsmanship and athletic skills.
      • Provide opportunities for participants to increase their level of activity.
    • Developmental assets
      • Participants demonstrate sportsmanship.
      • Participants believe it is important to follow rules
      • Participants respect the ability and contribution of others
      • Participants engage in activities that foster creativity and spirituality.
      • Participants demonstrate positive relationships with peers.
  5. Positive Adult Mentors - Programs must allow opportunities for youth to develop and maintain positive, sustained relationships with caring adults through mentoring and other programs that emphasize one-on-one interactions.
    • Outcomes
      • Increase support to youth during times of personal or social stress.
      • Increase support for decision making.
      • Increase access to support with academic tasks and/or homework.
      • Increase opportunities for career awareness and mentoring.
    • Developmental assets
      • Participants have a connection with a caring adult.
      • Participants believe they can be successful.
      • Participants believe they can make good decisions.
      • Participants believe they have a future.
  6. Service Learning Activities - Service-learning is a method of teaching and learning that connects classroom lessons with meaningful service to the community. Students build academic skills while strengthening communities through service. Service learning combines service tasks with structured, youth-driven opportunities that link the task to self-reflection, self-discovery, and the acquisition and comprehension of values, skills and knowledge content with service tasks.
    • Outcomes
      • Youth determine and meet real, defined community needs.
      • Youth learn beyond the classroom through active participation in service experiences.
      • Youth develop and use skills and knowledge in real-life situations.
      • Youth increase the amount of time spent to reflect by thinking, discussing and/or writing about service experiences.
      • Youth experience a sense of belonging to a community and an awareness of their responsibility to that community.
    • Developmental assets
      • Youth experience opportunities for experiential learning.
      • Youth are empowered to assume leadership roles.
      • Youth are involved in the decision making process.
      • Youth place a high value in helping others.
      • Youth develop empathy for others.
      • Youth believes that his/her life has a purpose
      • Youth engage in productive activities that build job and life skills and reinforce community-mindedness.

2. TARGET POPULATION -

This out-of-school time programming is to be provided to at-risk children and youth ages 6-17. The individual and/or family risk factors of youth targeted by this programming include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Youth living in a single-parent household
  • Youth residing in a household receiving TANF funds
  • Youth experiencing academic difficulties
  • Youth has witnessed or been a victim of family violence
  • Youth with siblings who dropped out of school
  • Youth with siblings who are teen parents
  • Youth with siblings who are involved in the juvenile justice system
  • Youth with one or both parents who are incarcerated
  • Youth in the DCFS system

Programs will not be allowed to charge a fee for participation.

3. DAYS AND HOURS OF OPERATION -

Programs should provide, on average, three hours of programming each day open. Programs must operate during out-of-school hours, based on the needs of the community. Programs are encouraged to operate the program during the critically important late afternoon/ early evening hours, from 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. Programs may operate later in the evening if a need is determined based on the community assessment. Programs may operate before school and/or after school. Agencies are encouraged to offer programming on Saturdays and Sundays, and during school breaks.

4. ENROLLMENT AND ATTENDANCE -

Required program data will be collected and maintained on all youth enrolled in the program in accordance with Department guidelines.

5. ASSESSMENT OF COMMUNITY NEED -

This out-of-school time programming should be designed to meet the specific needs of the community in which it is located. Applicants should consider recent community needs assessments, to be included as part of their proposal as appropriate. This may include local youth, family, school and community surveys and focus groups in addition to available data and other applicable documents. These will be reviewed to help determine the level of need in the community and to provide a foundation for developing carefully planned and thoughtful service provision. There should also be a direct correlation of needs with the activities planned and described in the program description.

6. COMMUNITY-CENTERED PROGRAMMING -

Programming should be comprehensive and holistic in its approach, offering a range of services designed to have a positive impact on youth participants' social, creative, physical and cognitive development. Programs should be designed around the core services described above. Agencies are encouraged to utilize established, evidence-based programming models that have a high potential to be effective with at-risk youth in at-risk community settings. Best practice or promising practice programming models should be utilized, if these models meet community needs and can be implemented. Best practice models are those known to be research-based and proven to be effective at preventing and/or delaying risk-taking behaviors. Promising practices are those for which some data has shown positive effects on delaying risk-taking behaviors, but the data are insufficient to support generalized outcomes.

In addition to considering community need in the selection of program model, agencies also should demonstrate their experience in implementing the type of programming they have chosen and discuss their capacity to do so.

The Department recognizes that communities have a unique perspective on what works and what is needed in their own community. Therefore, applicants may adapt best or promising practice models as necessary to meet the unique needs of the community.

7. TRAINING AND TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE -

Programs must agree to receive consultation and technical assistance from authorized representatives of the Department. The program and collaborating partners will be required to be in attendance at site visits by Department staff.

8. PROGRAM EVALUATION -

Awardees may be required to participate in the formal evaluation of the program developed by the Department and must cooperate in the collection of data for this purpose. Other data will be collected from programs including the following data elements:

  • unduplicated number of program participants
  • demographic characteristics of program participants
  • individual and family risk factor data
  • enrollment data
  • participant attendance data
  • hours of programming and operation
  • program service activities

Please note that some records and other information obtained by programs concerning the individuals served under this agreement may be confidential pursuant to state and federal statutes and/or administrative rules, and shall be protected from unauthorized disclosure.

9. SNACKS AND MEALS -

Programs must offer nutritious snacks to the participants. All food must be served in accordance with relevant local and state health standards for food preparation and handling and meet the standards of the National Afterschool Association. While program funds may be used to purchase food, programs are encouraged to apply for assistance through the food programs sponsored through the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), found at http://www.usda.gov ; the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE), found at http://www.isbe.state.il.us; or through America's Second Harvest, found at http://www.secondharvest.org.

10. TRANSPORTATION -

Program funds may be used to cover reasonable transportation costs for program participants, with the exception of transportation across state lines. In addition, transportation across state lines will require prior approval from the Department. If transportation is provided, the agency will be required to develop a written transportation plan directly related to project activities and to maintain the plan on file at the agency. This plan should have the approval of the agency's governing body and be available for review by the Department upon request.

11. COLLABORATION -

The importance of community collaboration cannot be overemphasized. Working together, youth, families and community entities can design programs that are best suited to meet the needs of local youth and to connect out-of-school time programs with community resources. Community-based agencies, government, faith-based organizations, civic organizations, businesses, foundations, youth and their families, working together, can provide a wide range of resources to support high-quality out-of-school time programs. The issues and concerns of the entire community can best be addressed by drawing upon diverse resources. The key to successful programming is collaborative planning and implementation.  Successful applicants will have developed community partnerships that include strong collaboration with the schools whose students will be attending program activities.

In particular, providers are encouraged to collaborate with schools in planning program services, in an effort to address state standards for academic achievement.

Additionally, youth and families can play a key role in the development of out-of-school time programming. Programs that include families and youth in the planning draw greater support in the long run and tend to be more culturally relevant. Parents should be involved in all phases of program development and implementation.

12. APPLICATION SCORING -

Applicants must submit an Application that contains the information outlined below. Each section must have a heading that corresponds to the headings listed below. If the applicant believes that the subject has been adequately addressed in another part of the application narrative, then provide the cross-reference to the appropriate part of the narrative. Information in this section should include, but not be limited to, the following:

a) Executive Summary (1 page maximum) - Not scored
  • Proposed service area
  • Number and location of program sites
  • Number of youth to be served
  • Core services to be provided
b) Organization Qualifications / Organizational Capacity (35 points)
  • Agency Experience
    • Provide information regarding recent state grants awarded within the last five years. Include the year, grant amount, and number of youth served.
    • Identify the geographic area(s) served. Describe how the organization is rooted in the community it proposes to serve.
  • Program Experience
    • Provide history of operating out-of-school time programs
    • Highlight the benefits/outcomes of the projects your organization has administered, and fiscal capacity.
    • For out-of-school time programs you have administered, how have you measured success? And by those measurements, how successful have the programs been? Provide specific data.
  • Program Staffing
    • Identify the main person responsible for this project and explain his or her experience and provide contact information (attach resume), including telephone and email address. The following information should be included for all staff involved:
    • Job descriptions for all employee positions that will be funded with this grant, including the program director, and an indication of the percent of time those employees will spend in this program.
    • Organizational chart of the Applicant showing where the program and its staff will be placed.
c) Program Plan (30 points)
  • Program Methodology
    • Explain how you will provide the core services identified
    • Explain your outreach activities and how you identify the youth to be served
    • Outline how will you retain youth who may have multiple barriers to services
    • Explain how you will achieve outcomes identified in core services
    • Provide the number sites and their locations
    • Provide the number of youth to be served at each site
    • Explain the services to be provided at each site
  • Program Timeline - Describe program implementation timeline. Include when the initial activities will begin, a description/planned dates for: key meetings with partners; selection of program delivery site(s); personnel transactions; component curricula selection; staff trainings.
  • Program Administration - It is anticipated that this program will begin November 1, 2014. Priority will be given to those projects that can begin upon grant execution. Provide a detailed narrative of the project implementation plan including key activities, outcomes and corresponding timeframes.
  • Program Implementation and Monitoring - Describe the strategies you will implement to assure that your program will stay on schedule and meet the program objectives. Describe your plan for data collection, monitoring and reporting on services to be provided and outcomes to be achieved.
  • Provider Selection (complete this part only if applicable) - If services will be provided by a sub-contracted provider, indicate how the provider(s) will be selected and the selection process timeframe. Provide a list of all the youth providers with whom you will potentially work.
d) Target Population / Community Needs (25 points)
  • Identify the community(ies) to be served and describe the need for services to be provided.
  • Identify the age group(s) to be served.
  • Identify the risk factors of the youth you intend to serve.
  • Identify the needs specific to the community(ies) you intend to address through this program.
e) Fiscal Capabilities (10 points)
  • Describe your organization's accounting procedures and system of oversight.
  • Complete the Budget Forms found in the Attachments according to the Allowable Costs of this RFA.
  • Provide a Budget Narrative describing how appropriate resources and personnel have been allocated for the tasks and activities described.

B. SERVICE CLASSIFICATION 2: YOUTH EMPLOYMENT

For youth employment (Service Classification 2), the program should provide eligible youth with age-appropriate job training, life skills, counseling, work-readiness skills and supervised meaningful work experience. This program presents an opportunity to connect youth to the skills that are needed to enter and advance in the workforce. The applicant should determine the targeted population (in-school youth ages 16-21, or out of school youth ages 16-24) that will be served through this grant and design the program in accordance with the information outlined below.

  • Work Experience Projects for In-School Youth (ages 16-21)
    Projects targeting in-school youth will provide seasonal work-experience projects that typically last 6-12 weeks. Eligible youth will be placed in age-appropriate, ability-appropriate, and experience-appropriate work sites with identified employers. Under supervision the youth will engage in meaningful work experience linked to one of the sixteen career clusters.
  • Work Experience Projects for Out-of School Youth (ages 16-24)
    Projects targeting out-of-school youth will provide full-time work experience projects that typically last for 3-6 months. Eligible youth will be placed in age-appropriate, ability-appropriate, and experience-appropriate work sites with identified employers. Under supervision, the youth will engage in meaningful work experience linked to one of the sixteen career clusters. At the successful conclusion of the work experience, Grantees will be encouraged to provide permanent on-the job training opportunities that are funded through private funders.

1. CORE SERVICES

All projects funded under this program should provide case management, supportive services, work readiness skills training and career education that is focused on Illinois' targeted industries and careers clusters.

  1. Case Management - Case management services include job assessment, career readiness, job placement, supportive services and necessary follow-up and referral upon completion of the program.
  2. Supportive Services - Supportive services may include transportation assistance, day care expenses, work clothes, tools and supplies, or other items that are required for youth to participate in the program. Applicants must submit documentation on how the youth will be assessed for supportive services and the internal controls that will ensure the accountability and appropriate expenditure of grant funds.
  3. Work Readiness Training - All projects must provide training on work readiness skills needed for employment. Training activities may include, but are not limited to, the following::
    • Exploring Careers and Training
    • Financial Literacy, including opening a bank account
    • Workplace Skills
    • Job Search Skills
    • Resume Writing
    • Applying for a Job
    • Interviewing Skills
    • Personal responsibility/safety, violence awareness, and prevention
  4. Career Education / Illinois Pathways - Career education includes training that expands the student's understanding and awareness of career clusters and pathways. Competitive projects will be tied to the courses, work-based learning activities, and credentials/assessments outlined in the Illinois pathways initiative1. The objective of these strategies is to provide youth with a structured pathway related to their academic or career interests, as well as resources to fully engage students in their learning and enable them to successfully transition into postsecondary education programs and the workforce.
  5. Targeted Industries and Careers - All educational enrichment and work experience projects must be aligned with the career clusters or groups of occupations and industries that have in common a set of foundational knowledge and skills.2 There are 16 nationally recognized clusters including:
    • Agriculture, Food & Natural Resources;
    • Architecture & Construction;
    • Arts;
    • Audio/Video Technology & Communications;
    • Business Management & Administration;
    • Education & Training;
    • Finance;
    • Government & Public Administration;
    • Health Science;
    • Hospitality & Tourism;
    • Human Services;
    • Information Technology;
    • Law, Public Safety, Corrections & Security;
    • Manufacturing; Marketing;
    • Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics; and
    • Transportation, Distribution & Logistics.
  6. General Worksite Guidelines - The employment of youth participants in a youth program must not occur at worksites where:
    • A participant's employment would unfavorably impact current employees (a youth participant cannot displace all or a portion of a current employee's hours including overtime, wages, employment benefits, or promotional opportunities);
    • A participant's employment would impair existing contracts for services or collective bargaining agreements;
    • A participant's employment would replace the work of employees who have experienced layoffs; and
    • An employer has terminated a regular employee or otherwise reduced its workforce with the intention of replacing said employees with participants subsidized with these funds.
  7. Worksite Agreements - All youth employment opportunities must have a signed worksite agreement. Each worksite agreement must contain, at a minimum, the following items for each worksite included in the agreement:
    • Worksite contact and mailing information;
    • Detailed information on the worksite such as location, working days and hours, activities, job titles, job descriptions and number of positions available under each;
    • Worksite supervisor information;
    • A detailed set of mutual terms, conditions, promises, and payments that the grantee and contractor have agreed upon; and
    • A listing of participants for each worksite along with their projected start and end date.  Grantees must ensure that worksites for youth adhere to current workplace safety guidelines, applicable federal/state wage, labor, and workers compensation laws.
  8. Supervisor Background Checks - All supervisors of youth worksites funded under this program must pass a background check conducted prior to being allowed to supervise any youth. Individuals who are not participants but hired as a supervisor must have the background check conducted as a condition of employment into a supervisory role. Background checks are an allowable expense as a condition of employment as a supervisor. Participants who are hired into a supervisory position must have a background check conducted prior to being allowed to perform any supervisory activities. Background checks are allowable expenditures so long as the individual receiving the background check is registered as a participant prior to receiving the background check.

2. MANDATORY REQUIREMENTS OF APPLICANTS -

Proposals are to be completed in the format indicated by DHS. DHS is seeking projects that have outreach systems to identify eligible youth including the ability to target underserved populations and have strong established employer relationships and methods to recruit employers.

Successful Community Youth Employment applicants agree to meet all program requirements including requirements to:

  • Have administrative and fiscal capacity to administer the program according to the Department's requirements.
  • Have the administrative capacity to assume the role of employer of record including the administration of payroll system.
  • Conduct outreach to identify eligible youth participants and partner with local organizations for referrals to the program.
  • Determine eligibility and obtain all required documentation, and complete a workplace assessment for proper work experience placement.
  • Provide educational enrichment, work readiness and career education components to all youth.
  • Recruit employers for worksites.
  • Qualifying employers will be based on level of supervision and quality of work experience. Work experience is related to the sixteen career clusters.
  • Provide supportive services to facilitate a positive attendance record.
  • Document youth attendance through time sheets.
  • Provide oversight of the program through the monitoring of worksites and the continuous assessment of program activities and outcomes.
  • Provide timely reports as required or requested.

3. ALLOWABLE COSTS -

Allowable costs are those that are necessary and reasonable based on the activity(ies) contained in the Scope of Work and are justified in the Budget Narrative. Allowable costs are defined below:

  • Youth Wages: Includes compensation for services rendered limited to youth wages and benefits to include FICA and workers compensation. Youth must be paid a wage rate of $9 per hour. The length of employment will vary based on the project. No less than 70% of the total funds may be budgeted and expended for youth wages.
  • Program Services: Includes, but is not limited to, the delivery of services related to youth employment that provides direct linkages to academic and occupational learning, employer coordination and recruitment, and youth supportive services that may include transportation, child care, work-related attire, physicals, and background checks.
  • Administration: Includes, but is not limited to, accounting; budgeting; financial and cash management; procurement and purchasing; property management; payroll; and audit costs. It is expected that Direct Administrative costs will represent a small portion of the overall program budget.
  • Contractual: Includes cost incurred via contract or subcontract that are needed for the achievement of project objectives. Organization procurement procedures must be followed on establishing contractual relationships.
  • Other: Includes direct cost not clearly identified in the other line items. A detailed list of cost and why they are not reported in the other line item is required.

Grantees will be held accountable to all state rules and regulations governing the use of these grant funds.

Unless otherwise stated, indirect costs are not allowed. (These are cots that are not directly attributable to and necessary for the implementation of the specified program.) Funding allocated is intended to provide direct services to youth.

4. APPLICATION SCORING -

Applicants must submit an Application that contains the information outlined below. Each section must have a heading that corresponds to the headings listed below. If the applicant believes that the subject has been adequately addressed in another part of the application narrative, then provide the cross-reference to the appropriate part of the narrative. Information in this section should include, but not be limited to, the following:

  1. Executive Summary (1 page maximum) - Not scored
    • Proposed service area
    • Number and location of program sites
    • Number of youth to be served
    • Core services to be provided
  2. Organization Qualifications / Organizational Capacity (30 points)
    • Agency Experience
      • Provide information regarding recent state grants awarded within the last five years. Include the year, grant amount, and number of youth served.
      • Identify the geographic area(s) served. Describe how Organization is rooted in the community it proposes to serve.
    • Program Experience
      • Provide history operating youth and job training programs
      • Identify the number of years providing summer youth employment.
      • Highlight the benefits/outcomes of the project, and fiscal capacity.
      • Provide information regarding your organization's capacity and experience in managing a participant payroll system - especially for summer youth employment programs (if applicable).
      • For youth programs you have administered, how do you measure success? And by those measurements, how successful have the youth programs been? Provide specific data.
    • Program Staffing
      • Identify the main person responsible for this project and explain his or her experience and provide contact information (attach resume), including telephone and email address. The following information should be included for all staff involved with students:
      • Job descriptions for all employee positions that will be funded with this grant, including the program director, and an indication of the percent of time those employees will spend in this program.
      • Organizational chart of the Applicant showing where the program and its staff will be placed.
  3. Program Plan (25 points)
    • Program Methodology
      • Explain your outreach activities and how you identify the youth to be served-especially for at-risk populations (i.e., ex-offenders, at-risk youth, disabled youth, out-of-school youth, etc.)
      • Explain your eligibility determination process to include how you will obtain documentation that will be included in each of the youth's files (i.e., family income determination, food stamp/SNAP letter, etc.)
      • How will you retain youth who may have multiple barriers to employment in your programs?
      • Explain if/how your 2014 program is supported by other grants and funding sources and provide information to verify that you have the capacity to serve additional youth (if applicable).
    • Program Timeline - Describe program implementation timeline. Include when the initial activities will begin, a description/planned dates for: key meetings with partners; selection of program delivery site(s); personnel transactions; component curricula selection; staff trainings.
    • Program Administration - It is anticipated that this program will begin November 1, 2014. Priority will be given to those projects that can begin upon grant execution. Provide a detailed narrative of the project implementation plan including key activities, outcomes and corresponding timeframes. The applicant must demonstrate that they have the administrative capacity to be the employer of record for this project.
    • Program Implementation and Monitoring - Describe the strategies you will implement to assure that your program will stay on schedule and meet the program objectives. What is your strategy for monitoring sub-contracted providers and assuring they are meeting program timelines and requirements (if applicable)? Include also your strategy for monitoring worksites (site visits, phone contact, reports, etc. and include frequency)
    • Provider Selection (complete this part only if applicable)
      • If services will be provided by a sub-contracted provider, how will the provider(s) be selected and what is your timeframe for the selection process?
      • Provide a list of all the youth providers with whom you will potentially work.
  4. Target Population and Youth Recruiting (25 points)
    • Youth Served - Provide detail of the proposed summer youth employment and training program design. Identify the geographic area to be served and how the youth are most at-risk. What targeted population(s) (in-school youth 16-21, or out of school youth 16-24) will be served through this grant? Copy and Complete the Chart Below:
    • Employer Recruitment and Placement
      • Describe your strategy for recruiting worksites and ensuring proper levels and quality of supervision. 
      • Describe your strategies for identifying and placing participants in appropriate employment.
      • List the employers that will be a worksite or those that you will reach out to for job placements; include your organization if it will be a placement site. Provide the number of jobs by employer you plan to secure. Copy and complete the form below.
    Project Type Anticipated Number of Youth to be served Average Number of weeks in Project Average Number of hours worked per week Total Number of hours on work readiness
    Work Experience Projects for In-School Youth (16-21)
    Work Experience Projects for Out-of-School Youth (16-24)

    Name of Employer

    Sector

    Secured Placements (Yes/No)

    Contact Name and Number

    Number of Jobs

    ADA Accessible (Yes/No)

    e) Fiscal Capabilities (20 points)

    • Describe your organization's accounting procedures and system of oversight.
    • Complete the Budget Forms found in the Attachments according to the Allowable Costs of this RFA.
    • Provide a Budget Narrative describing how appropriate resources and personnel have been allocated for the tasks and activities described.

C. SERVICE CLASSIFICATION 3: EVIDENCE-BASED DEMONSTRATION PROJECTS SUPPORTING YOUTH AND FAMILIES

The Department is seeking proposals from community-based public, private, or not-for-profit agencies to provide evidence-based demonstration projects supporting youth and families. Providers must demonstrate a need for services that do not fall within the parameters given for Service Classification 1 (out-of-school time programming) or Service Classification 2 (youth employment) of this RFA and indicate the research used to inform the programming to be provided.

  1. CORE SERVICES - The application should detail the core services to be provided, the outcomes they are designed to achieve, and the research base used for the program design.
  2. TARGET POPULATION - Applicants should identify the population that will receive services.
  3. COMMUNITY NEEDS ASSESMENT - The narrative should demonstrate the needs specific to the community(ies) to be served, as well as explain why these needs cannot be met through Service Classification 1 (out-of-school time programming) or Service Classification 2 (youth employment) of this RFA.
  4. APPLICATION SCORING - Applicants must submit an Application that contains the information outlined below. Each section must have a heading that corresponds to the headings listed below. If the applicant believes that the subject has been adequately addressed in another part of the application narrative, then provide the cross-reference to the appropriate part of the narrative. Information in this section should include, but not be limited to, the following:
    • Executive Summary (1 page maximum) - Not scored
      • Proposed service area
      • Number and location of program sites
      • Number of youth to be served
      • Core services to be provided
    • Organization Qualifications / Organizational Capacity (30 points)
      • Agency Experience
        • Provide information regarding recent state grants awarded within the last three years. Include the year, grant amount, and number of youth served.
        • Identify the geographic area(s) served. Describe how the organization is rooted in the community it proposes to serve.
      • Program Experience
        • Provide history of operating programs
        • Highlight the benefits/outcomes of the project, and fiscal capacity.
        • For programs you have administered, indicate how you measure success and by those measurements, explain how successful the programs have been. Provide specific data.
      • Program Staffing
        • Identify the main person responsible for this project and explain his or her experience and provide contact information (attach resume), including telephone and email address. The following information should be included for all staff involved:
        • Job descriptions for all employee positions that will be funded with this grant, including the program director, and an indication of the percent of time those employees will spend in this program.
        • Organizational chart of the Applicant showing where the program and its staff will be placed.
    • Program Plan (35 points)
      • Program Methodology
        • Explain how you will provide services
        • Explain your outreach activities and how you identify who is to be served
        • Provide the number sites and their locations
        • Provide the number of youth to be served at each site
        • Explain the services to be provided at each site
      • Program Timeline - Describe program implementation timeline. Include when the initial activities will begin, a description/planned dates for: key meetings with partners; selection of program delivery site(s); personnel transactions; component curricula selection; staff trainings.
      • Program Administration - It is anticipated that this program will begin November 1, 2014. Priority will be given to those projects that can begin upon grant execution. Provide a detailed narrative of the project implementation plan including key activities, outcomes and corresponding timeframes.
      • Program Implementation and Monitoring - Describe the strategies you will implement to assure that your program will stay on schedule and meet the program objectives.
      • Provider Selection (complete this part only if applicable) - If services will be provided by a sub-contracted provider, indicate how the provider(s) will be selected and the selection process timeframe. Provide a list of all the youth providers with whom you will potentially work.
    • Target Population / Community Needs (25 points)
      • Identify the risk factors of the population you intend to serve.
      • Identify the community(ies) you will serve and the specific needs you intend to address through this program.
    • Fiscal Capabilities (10 points)
      • Describe your organization's accounting procedures and system of oversight.
      • Complete the Budget Forms found in the Attachments according to the Allowable Costs of this RFA.
      • Provide a Budget Narrative describing how appropriate resources and personnel have been allocated for the tasks and activities described.