20-444-80-1251-01 All Our Kids Early Childhood Networks Initiative NOFO Information

Summary Information

1. Awarding Agency Name: Human Services
2. Agency Contact:

Ana Maria Accove,

anamaria.accove@illinois.gov

312-793-2748

3. Announcement Type: Initial announcement
4. Type of Assistance Instrument: Grant
5. Funding Opportunity Number: 20-444-80-1251-01
6. Funding Opportunity Title: All Our Kids Early Childhood Networks Initiative
7. CSFA Number: 444-80-1251
8. CSFA Popular Name: AOK Networks
9. CFDA Number(s): Not Applicable
10. Anticipated Number of Awards: 12
11. Estimated Total Program Funding: $921,443.00
12. Award Range $63,000 Minimum and $90,000 maximum award
13. Source of Funding: State
14. Cost Sharing or Matching Requirement: No
15. Indirect Costs Allowed Yes
Restrictions on Indirect Costs No
16. Posted Date: 04/01/2019
17. Closing Date for Applications: 05/01/2019
18. Technical Assistance Session: Session Offered: No

Agency-specific Content for the Notice of Funding Opportunity

A. Program Description

The All Our Kids Early Childhood Networks (AOK Networks) is a community system development initiative that aims to ensure the healthy growth and optimal development of young children in the context of their families. It recognizes the value of cross-system collaboration to increase collective benefits by focusing on shared goals. With the understanding that coordinated efforts around a shared purpose yield greater benefits and wider reaching impact. AOK Networks develop coordinated and integrated local service delivery across health, early care and education, human service and other service systems. AOK Networks create and implement collaborative strategies and activities that address the unique needs, cultures, and strengths of local communities. This initiative is a collaborative effort between the Illinois Department of Human Services, the Illinois State Board of Education, local health departments and local agencies serving pregnant women, children birth to five and their parent/caregivers. The overall goal of the AOK Networks is to ensure locally that babies are born healthy, children maintain physical and emotional health and wellbeing and enter school ready to learn. AOK Networks consist of a network coordinator and a wide range of stakeholders representing health, mental health, early learning, human services, family support, faith-based organizations, families and more.

The objectives of the initiative are a) to establish and maintain a community collaboration (the AOK Network) representing early childhood development system partners and individuals with `interests and services for families with young children to work on improving access, equity, quality, coordination and consumer satisfaction of local service delivery; b) to conduct, a community assessment utilizing primary and secondary data sources to identify local early childhood system strengths and priority issues to be addressed through the development and implementation of strategic initiatives that incorporate system-change approaches, system building strategies and include a user-centered design; and c) to engage parents/caregivers as Network partners through participation in Network meetings, parent workgroups, community events, written surveys, periodic parent cafés, and/or public education campaigns. Grantees will work with the Department to develop a community-based system of health and human services for pregnant women, children birth to five years old and their parents/caregivers.

Terms and Definitions

To assist Applicants with understanding the terminology found in this Notice of Funding Opportunity, definitions for commonly used terms are provided below.

  • Early Childhood (EC): these services include education and support services aimed at improving the health, social-emotional, and cognitive development of young children birth through age five.
  • System: a set of interacting and connected parts that has a shared purpose and functions as a whole.
  • Early Childhood System: this bring together early learning, health and mental health, and family support and engagement to improve outcomes for children and families. Services and programs that are part of the EC system include but are not limited to) the following:
    • Health and Mental Health: such as breastfeeding support, Family Case Management/Better Birth Outcomes, mental health counseling, prenatal health care, well-child visits, immunizations, and WIC.
    • Early learning experiences: including home visiting; family, friend, and neighbor care; family child care homes; center- and school-based early education services; early intervention in natural environments; and special education services. 
    • Family support and engagement: such as food pantries, foster care, Intact Family Services, housing/shelter, substance abuse, TANF, violence prevention and workforce development.
  • System-building: the ongoing process of developing the structures, behaviors, and connections, that make all the components of a system operate as a whole, to promote shared results for children and families. At the local level, this is referred to as community systems development. State-level systems building, and local community systems development are both necessary in order for child and family outcomes to improve.
  • Community systems development: local nonprofit organizations, public agencies, families, faith-based entities and other partners work in collaboration to focus and align their work and develop shared processes to achieve identified child and family outcomes. Partners use common data to design and implement systems change in small iterative cycles that adjust as system parts interact. By working to advance a shared community agenda, organizations also improve their own systems and, as a result, may also inform larger system improvements.
  • Capacity-building: Improving the ability of community stakeholders to come together, learn, make well-reasoned decisions about the community's present and future outcomes. It includes the Network's competence and perseverance to carry out its work proactively and in response to changes locally and beyond through collaboration, adaptation and self-renewal. Core areas of capacity-building include developing a shared agenda, promoting collaborative leadership and engagement, fostering continuous learning and adaptive action and forging Network function and structure.
  • Collaboration: this brings together individuals, community stakeholders, families, and organizations to address and solve shared challenges that cannot be resolved alone. A collaboration develops a shared vision for their community and defines a set of goals to address a community concern.
  • Collective impact: occurs when organizations from different sectors agree to solve a specific social problem using a common agenda, aligning their efforts, and using common measures of success. Important actors from different sectors work together on a common agenda for solving a specific social problem. Successful collective impact initiatives typically have five conditions that together produce alignment and lead to powerful results: a common agenda, shared measurement systems, mutually reinforcing activities, continuous communication, and backbone support organizations. The AOK Networks' Framework is an example of collective impact.
  • Family engagement: There is a continuum of family engagement in the context of community systems and collaborations. In this continuum, families may be ignored, viewed as the recipient of services, utilized as consultants, or fully engaged as a change agent. As the highest level of engagement, as change agents, families are empowered to not only engage in discussions and decision-making, but also actively take part in implementing actions.
  • Measurable: capable of being measured: data indicators are established to measure progress toward a specific goal. To determine if a goal is measurable, ask questions such as: How much? How many? How will I know when it is accomplished?
  • Partnership Agreement or MOU: a written agreement between two or more entities to carry out specific objectives (usually including referrals and information sharing) to achieve shared outcomes for children and families. The signed entities are expected to work together throughout the agreement period to ensure that shared child and family outcomes are achieved.
  • Shared agenda: Having a shared understanding of the AOK Networks' system building mission and framework as well as a shared investment in the Network's local, cross-sector goals and initiatives that support that mission.

AOK Network Provider Responsibilities

  1. The Provider will work with the Department to develop a local comprehensive early childhood service and support system to meet the needs of pregnant women, children birth to five years old and their parents/caregivers.
  2. The Provider will hire one (1.0) FTE highly qualified local coordinator to develop and maintain a community collaboration (the AOK Network) representing parents, local agencies/organizations, and community stakeholders with interests and supports for pregnant women and families with young children within the geographically assigned area.
  3. The Provider will promote the professional development and provide support to the local AOK Network coordinator in any of the following ways:
    1. Attend training together
    2. Respond to funder requests for information
    3. Provide assessment and planning support
    4. Manage the local coordinator's responsibilities during any leaves of absence or staff transitions
  4. The Provider will furnish monthly financial reports, by completing and submitting the Periodic Financial Report (PFR) - to the Department and a copy to the AOK Networks State Administrator in alignment with the approved budget by the 15th of the month following the reporting period.
  5. The Provider will record all efforts completed toward identified objectives in the AOK Connect reporting database monthly, submitting semi-annual Periodic Performance Reports (PPR) to update the Department on the Network's progress. The provider will also submit any additional documentation of efforts as request by the state administrator.
  6. The Provider will participate in process and outcome evaluation services provided by the designated contractor as determined necessary by the Department.
  7. It is an expectation of the grant that health department Administrators/ Directors and on-site supervisors of AOK local coordinators attend an annual AOK Networks update meeting.

Local AOK Networks Coordinator's Qualifications

The AOK Network Coordinator is charged with leading the local birth to five community through a planning and implementation process to improve the system of services and supports that gives equitable access to high-quality programs for all young children. The grantee should seek to hire a local coordinator that possesses the following qualifications and experiences:

  1. Understanding and familiarity with the various sectors of the birth to five service community (i.e., maternal and child health, early intervention, early care and education, mental health, family supports and prevention services)
  2. Understanding of local community assessment processes
  3. Strategic planning experience
  4. Data collection and analysis experience
  5. Ability to lead in a collaborative environment
  6. Group facilitation skills and experience
  7. Leadership development skills and experience
  8. Understanding of systems development
  9. Network/collaboration development and management experience
  10. Proficiency in Microsoft Office Suite
  11. Bachelor's degree in Social Work, Psychology, Early Childhood Development, Early Childhood Education, or Public Health Administration preferred

Local Network Coordinator's Responsibilities

The local Coordinator's responsibilities include, but are not limited to, the following activities:

  1. Establish and maintain a community collaboration (the AOK Network) representing early childhood development sectors and individuals with interests and services for families with young children to work on improving access, equity, quality, coordination and consumer satisfaction of local service delivery.
  2. Conduct an early childhood community assessment utilizing primary and secondary data sources to determine community strengths and identify priority child and family outcome issues.
  3. Represent the early childhood sector in the development of the local IPLAN/MAPP to provide insight on the identified early childhood outcome and system issues.
  4. Incorporate system building strategies, system-change approaches, and a user-centered design in the development and implementation of three initiatives focused on:
    • Network Capacity
    • Identified Child or Family Outcome Issue
    • Information and Referral
  5. Utilize local primary and secondary data to monitor and evaluate progress on initiatives' strategic plan.
  6. Conduct self-assessments to include but not limited to the Wilder survey, local coordinator questionnaire, parent and provider surveys provided by Department and submit as indicated.
  7. Engage parents/caregivers as Network partners through participation in Network meetings, parent workgroups, community events, written surveys, periodic parent cafés, and/or public education campaigns.
  8. Participate in all mandatory statewide meetings with the Department held three times a year; attend AOK-sponsored regional trainings, teleconferences and webinars; promote the experience and lessons learned of the AOK initiative at state or national conferences; and attend professional development opportunities recommended by the Department.
  9. Develop and maintain resource directories/cards with an inventory of local early childhood services (and related services to families with children from birth to five) updating this information annually and posting on the Network's local webpage at www.aoknetworks.org.
  10. Participate in a statewide AOK Network effort to promote children's mental health public awareness by connecting with the National SAMHSA website at www.samhsa.gov/children  for resources and conducting local events to address children's mental health issues/topics that are specific to the community.
  11. Update quarterly the Network's local webpage on the AOK website at www.aoknetworks.org  by providing information such as Network accomplishments, community events and resources, and posting meeting dates on the AOK website calendar.

Performance Measures

The Provider will submit semi-annual Periodic Performance Reports (PPR) to update the Department on the following performance measures.

  1. Number of Network meeting held.
  2. Number of sectors participating in the Network and/or in workgroups of the Network.
  3. Number of Network capacity initiative approaches conducted.
  4. Number of System initiative approaches conducted.
  5. Number of required Coordinator meetings attended by the provider.
  6. Number of approved professional development opportunities completed by the local coordinator.
  7. Number of updates to the community resource guide.
  8. Number of workforce development trainings conducted.
  9. Number of reports submitted to include the Periodic Financial Reports (PFR) and Periodic Performance Reports (PPR) by the established deadlines by the provider.

Performance Standards

By June 30th and in accordance with the approved plan:

  1. Ten Network meeting were held.
  2. Six sectors participated in the Network and or Network workgroups.
  3. 80% of the Network capacity approaches planned for this fiscal year were conducted.
  4. 80% of the System approaches planned for this fiscal year were conducted.
  5. 100% of the required local Coordinator meetings were attended by the coordinator and or their supervisor.
  6. One approved professional development training was completed by the local Coordinator.
  7. One update to the community resource guide.
  8. Three workforce development trainings completed.
  9. 100% of required reports were submitted by the established deadline.

B. Funding Information

  1. This award is funded through the State General Revenue and does not have a match requirement.
  2. In FY2020, the Department anticipates the availability of approximately $921,443 with an award range of $63,000 - $90,000. The Department anticipates funding 12 applicants to continue efforts as described in this NOFO.
  3. Communities eligible to apply for this grant are Adams County, City of Harvey, Kane County, McLean County, Rock Island County, Sangamon County, Stephenson/Carroll County, Tazewell County, Town of Cicero, Wabash/Edwards Counties, Will County, and Chicago Neighborhoods with these boundaries:

    • Roseland, Riverdale, Pullman and West Pullman;
    • North and South Lawndale, East and West Garfield; and
    • Grand Boulevard, Washington Park, Fuller Park and Douglas.
  4. The grant period will begin no sooner than July 1, 2019 and will continue through June 30, 2020.
  5. This grant will NOT require a match.
  6. Funding allocated under this grant is intended to support a community-based collaboration (the AOK Network) to promote healthy pregnancies and the positive growth and development of children birth to five years old and their parents/caregivers by developing local high-quality, well-coordinated, easily-accessible early childhood system of services and supports that follow the AOK Conceptual Framework.
  7. It is expected that administrative costs, both direct and indirect, will represent a small portion of the overall program budget.
  8. Proposed project budgets and narratives must be sufficiently detailed and justified to be approved by IDHS. Successful applicants will NOT receive a grant agreement until after their budget has been approved through the CSA system. 

    The budget template and instructions can be used as a tool to assist in determining expenses; however, the final budget must be completed in the CSA Tracking System.

  9. All funding is subject to sufficient appropriation.

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 the grant agreement. Samples of this agreement may be found on the DHS Contract Information page.  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.

The release of this NOFO 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.

C. Eligibility Information

1. Eligible Applicants

This competitive funding opportunity is limited to those public or private, not-for-profit community-based agencies who meet all the Pre-Qualification and Mandatory Requirements described in this section. Failure to provide the requested information as outlined in this NOFO to demonstrate these criteria are met will result in the application being removed from funding consideration.

Communities eligible to apply for this grant are Adams County, City of Harvey, Kane County, McLean County, Rock Island County, Sangamon County, Stephenson/Carroll County, Tazewell County, Town of Cicero, Wabash/Edwards Counties, Will County, and Chicago Neighborhoods with these boundaries:

  • Roseland, Riverdale, Pullman and West Pullman;
  • North and South Lawndale, East and West Garfield; and
  • Grand Boulevard, Washington Park, Fuller Park and Douglas.

Successful applications will serve as the applicant's annual program plan and budget for the FY2020 grant period.

Applicant agencies must comply with all applicable provisions of state and federal laws and regulations pertaining to nondiscrimination, sexual harassment and equal employment opportunity including, but not limited to: The Illinois Human Rights Act (775 ILCS 5/1-101 et seq.), The Public Works Employment Discrimination Act (775 ILCS 10/1 et seq.), The United States Civil Rights Act of 1964 (as amended) (42 USC 2000a-and 2000H-6), Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (29 USC 794), The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (42 USC 12101 et seq.), and The Age Discrimination Act (42 USC 6101 et seq.).

Applicant agencies may not be eligible for a grant award until they have pre-qualified through the Grant Accountability and Transparency Act (GATA) Grantee Portal, www.grants.illinois.gov  During pre-qualification, Dun and Bradstreet verifications are performed including a check of Debarred and Suspended status and good standing with the Secretary of State. The pre-qualification process also includes a financial and administrative risk assessment utilizing an Internal Controls Questionnaire. If applicable, the agency will be notified that it is ineligible for an award as a result of the Dun and Bradstreet verification. The entity will be informed of corrective action needed to become eligible for a grant award. Applicants must be pre-qualified, therefore, applications from entities that have not completed the GATA pre-qualification process prior to the due date of this application will NOT be reviewed and will NOT be considered for funding.

2. Cost Sharing or Matching

Applicants are NOT required to provide match to this award.

3. Indirect Cost Rate Requirements

Every organization that receives an FY2020 state award must make an indirect cost rate proposal or election in the Crowe Activity Review System (CARS), including organizations that are choosing not to claim payment for indirect costs.

CARS URL: https://solutions.crowehorwath.com/CARS/StateofIllinoisGOMB/Login.aspx  

Indirect Cost Rate Election:

  1. Federally Negotiated Rate. Organizations that receive direct federal funding may have an indirect cost rate that was negotiated with the Federal Cognizant Agency. Illinois will accept the federally negotiated rate. The organization must provide a copy of the federal NICRA.
  2. State Negotiated Rate. The organization must negotiate an indirect cost rate with the State of Illinois by completing an indirect cost rate proposal in the CARS system if they do not have Federally Negotiated Rate or elect to use the De Minimis Rate.
  3. De Minimis Rate. An organization that has never received a Federal or State Negotiated Rate may elect a de Minimis rate of 10% of modified total direct cost (MTDC). Once established, the de Minimis rate may be used indefinitely. The State of Illinois must verify the calculation of the MTDC annually in order to accept the de Minimis rate. If programs elect to use the De Minimis rate, it is critical that program budgets accurately calculate the MTDC base. Please see the regulation below and note the exclusions to MTDC.
  4. No Rate: Grantees have discretion not to claim payment for indirect costs. Grantees that elect not to claim indirect costs cannot be reimbursed for indirect costs. The organization must record an election of "No Indirect Costs" into CARS.

2 CFR § 200.68 Modified Total Direct Cost (MTDC).

MTDC means all direct salaries and wages, applicable fringe benefits, materials and supplies, services, travel, and sub awards and subcontracts up to the first $25,000 of each sub award or subcontract (regardless of the period of performance of the sub awards and subcontracts under the award). MTDC excludes equipment, capital expenditures, charges for patient care, rental costs, tuition remission, scholarships and fellowships, participant support costs and the portion of each sub award and subcontract in excess of $25,000. Other items may only be excluded when necessary to avoid a serious inequity in the distribution of indirect costs, and with the approval of the cognizant agency for indirect costs.

D. Application and Submission Information

1. Application Package.

Application materials are provided throughout the announcement. They may also be found on the Illinois Department of Human Services web site page: Family and Community Services Grant Information - FY2020 Additional copies may be obtained by contacting the contact person listed below.

Each applicant must have access to the internet. The Department's web site will contain information regarding the NOFO and materials necessary for submission. Questions and answers will also be posted on the Department's website as described later in this announcement. It is the responsibility of each applicant to monitor that web site and comply with any instructions or requirements relating to the NOFO.

  Contact Person

  Ana Maria Accove, Program Administrator

  IDHS, Division of Family & Community Services

  401 S. Clinton 4th Floor

  Chicago, Illinois 60607

  anamaria.accove@illinois.gov

  Phone: 312-793-2748

2. Content and Form of Application Submission

Uniform Application for State Grant Assistance and Pre-Qualification Process

To be eligible for a contract, all grantees must complete the Pre-Qualification Process that includes the Fiscal Internal Controls Questionnaire (ICQ), and for every program/grant, applicants must complete the Programmatic Risk Assessment and Uniform Application for State Grant Assistance.

Proposal Narrative Content

The Proposed Narrative Content must be submitted as a pdf. The entire application including appendices, must be sequentially page numbered. All applications must be typed on 8 1/2 x 11-inch paper using, 12-point type and at 100% magnification (not reduced). The program narrative must not exceed the specific page limits outlined in this NOFO. The required appendices are NOT included in the page limitation.

Applicants must submit a proposal that contains the information outlined below. Each section must have a heading that corresponds to the headings in bold type 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. The narrative portion must follow the page guidelines set for each section and must be in the order requested. If an applicant receives an award through this NOFO the proposal will become the local program plan and budget. The application/plan will be the basis for monitoring compliance by DHS.

A. Executive Summary (2-page maximum) - 5 points

The Executive Summary will serve as a stand-alone document that may be shared with various state-level stakeholders and others requesting a brief overview of each funded project. Therefore, applicants should be concise and direct in their description. At a minimum, each of the following should be addressed in the Executive Summary.

  • State the total amount of funds requested.
  • Define the geographic area to be served and membership that will facilitate a strong early childhood system.
  • Give a short description about your agency. Include the agency's qualifications to execute the grant project.
  • Overview of grant proposal
    • State the child and/or family outcome issue/s to be addressed, describing how the local comprehensive information and referral process will address identified issues.
    • Describe how you propose to address the issues or need.
B. Needs Statement (2-page maximum), 20 points

Provide the following information about the designated service area and target population. For each indicator, provide the data source and the year the data represents. Use the most recent data available and data that best represents the designated service area. If your agency is serving more than one county or community, provide the data, if available by community.

  • Demographics including population of children birth to age 5, variables such as poverty, race/ethnicity, and language use.
  • Social and economic factors, including children in substitute care, refugee population and families receiving SNAP and TANF.
  • Other data regarding the target population.
C. CAPACITY (3-page maximum) - 30 points

The purpose of this section is for the applicant to present an accurate picture of the capacity, readiness and ability to effectively coordinate and carryout the AOK Networks initiative in the identified geographical area. Information in this section should include, but not necessarily be limited to, the following:

  • Your vision/mission/purpose focused on building and or changing the local early childhood system to promote the positive development of children birth to five and their families.
  • Current programs and resources provided by applicant within the targeted service area. The applicant's internal policies or procedures that promotes representation of each of its programs/resources in an early childhood community system development collaboration (AOK Network), and level of engagement relevant to the efforts described in this NOFO.
  • Recruitment and stakeholder engagement practices to build relationship-based approaches and communication feedback loops to ensure core stakeholders are engaged in cross system work, as well as to leverage a broader constituency focused on child and family issues.
  • Experience in maintaining the backbone structure for a collaboration that facilitates a shared vision and progress toward common goals, across diverse representation of community members and leaders.
  • Experience in managing an action plan of data-driven strategies and activities to effect change, including gathering and analyzing data, measuring and tracking process, and collecting additional data as needed to determine progress.
  • The applicant's organizational chart as Appendix 1: Organizational Chart, showing where the program and its staff will be placed. If subcontractors will be used, include the relationship with those organizations in the chart.
  • Job description for the (1.0) FTE local AOK Network Coordinator and resume, if currently hired as Appendix 2: AOK Network Coordinator Job Description and as Appendix 2a: AOK Network Coordinator Resume.
D. Strategic Plan (3-page maximum) - 40 points

Provide the following information regarding the proposed strategic plan for FY2020:

  • Describe the types of data that was collected, summarized, and presented in your most recent community assessment.
  • Describe the applicant's role in guiding the community assessment.
  • State the local child/family outcome problem/s identified through the community assessment process.
  • Describe the system assessment and strategy design process undertaken to develop approaches and strategies toward desired objectives and outcomes.
  • The proposed program plan for FY2020. Submit completed strategic plans for each of the three required initiatives as Appendix 3: Strategic Plans, see Strategic Plan templates.
    • Network Capacity
    • Identified Child or Family Outcome Issue
    • Information and Referral
E. Budget and Budget Narrative- 5 points

The budget must be submitted via the Community Service Agreement System (CSA System).  For more information about submitting a budget in the CSA System, see IDHS GATA Budgets

The Budget entered into the CSA system will include the narrative or detailed description/justification for each line in the budget and will describe why each expenditure is necessary for program implementation and how you arrived at the particular amount. Please include cost allocations as necessary. This narrative must also clearly identify indirect costs, direct program costs, direct administrative costs. The Budget should clearly describe how the specified resources and personnel have been allocated for the tasks and activities described in your plan. The Budget should be electronically signed and submitted in the CSA system. The Budget that has been entered into CSA should be printed out and included with your application as Appendix 4: Applicant Budget. The Budget must be signed by the Provider's Chief Executive Officer and/or Chief Financial Officer.

The budget template and instructions can be used as a tool to assist in determining expenses; however, the final budget must be completed in the CSA System.

The budget may need to be revised over the course of the grant approval process. The division's program and fiscal staff may work with grantees to negotiate a budget for the final grant award.

3. Mandatory Forms to be Submitted by Applicant

  1. Uniform State Grant Application
  2. Proposal Narrative 
  3. Budget, in the CSA System
  4. Budget Narrative, in the CSA System
  5. Required Appendices
    1. Appendix 1: Organizational Chart
    2. Appendix 2: AOK Network Coordinator Job Description
    3. Appendix 2a (if applicable): AOK Network Coordinator Resume.
    4. Appendix 3: Strategic Plans, completed on plan templates, one for each initiative
      1. Network Capacity
      2. Identified Child or Family Outcome Issue
      3. Information and Referral
    5. Appendix 4: Copy of Applicant's Budget submitted through the CSA system

4. Submission Dates and Times

To be considered, proposals with all mandatory forms must be emailed to Ana Maria Accove at anamaria.accove@illinois.gov  by May 1, 2019. The deadline will be strictly enforced without exception. In the event of a dispute, the applicant bears the burden of proof that the application was received on time.

5. Funding Restrictions

All applicants will use grant funds according to the guidelines, conditions and parameters set forth in this funding notice and in compliance with federal statutes, regulations and the terms and conditions of any applicable federal awards. Please refer to 2 CFR 200 - Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards, PART 200 Subpart E - Cost Principles

Allowable costs:

Allowable costs are those that are necessary and reasonable based on the activity(ies) contained in the Scope of Work, are justified in the Budget Narrative, and are allowable under Subpart E of 2 CFR 200.

Unallowable costs:

Please refer to 2 CFR 200 - Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards, PART 200 Subpart E - Cost Principles to determine the appropriateness of costs. In addition, and specific to this grant, the following costs will be unallowable without specific prior written approval from DHS:

  1. Entertainment costs, except where specific costs that might otherwise be considered entertainment have a programmatic purpose and are authorized in the approved budget (2 CFR 200.438)
  2. Capital expenditures for general purpose equipment, including any vehicle regardless of cost, buildings, and land (2 CFR 200.439)
  3. Capital expenditures for improvements to land, buildings, or equipment which materially increase their value or useful life (2 CFR 200.439)
  4. Food, and other goods or services for personal use of the grantee's employees, contractors, or consultants of the grantee unless authorized as per diem under the State of Illinois Governor's Travel Control Board (2 CFR 200.445).

Administrative costs:

It is expected that administrative costs, both direct and indirect, will represent a small portion of the overall program budget. Administrative means those activities performed by staff and costs which are supportive of and required for project implementation for which there is no direct client contact such as fiscal staff; audit; clerical support; office rent, utilities, general office equipment etc. Program budgets and narratives will detail how all proposed expenditures are directly necessary for program implementation and will distinguish between Indirect/Direct Administrative and Direct Program expenses. Any budget deemed to include inappropriate or excessive administrative costs will not be approved.

6. Other Submission Requirements

The Mandatory Requirements are essential items that must be met by the Applicant. If any Mandatory Requirements are not met, the responding Applicant's entire proposal will not be considered. If all responding applicants fail to meet a particular mandatory requirement, that mandatory requirement may, at the sole discretion of the State, be removed from the Mandatory Requirements so the evaluation process may continue.

  1. The selected provider must be in a position to begin providing services on July 1, 2019 at 12:01 a.m.
  2. Indirect & Direct Administrative Costs: It is expected that administrative costs, both direct and indirect, will represent a small portion of the overall program budget.
  3. Technology: Agencies awarded funds through this NOFO must have a computer that meets the following minimum specifications to utilize the required DHS AOK Connect web-based reporting system, participate in webinars and teleconferences and allow the receipt/submission of electronic program and fiscal information, to include but not limited to:
    • High-speed Internet access
    • Email capability
    • Microsoft Office Suite
    • Adobe Reader

E. Application Review Information

1. Review Panel

Applications that fail to meet the criteria described in Section C "Eligibility Information" will not be scored and considered for funding.

Proposals will be reviewed by a panel established by staff from IDHS. Panel members will initially read and evaluate applications independently using guidelines furnished by IDHS.  If the scores are inconsistent, the panel of reviewers will subsequently participate in review meetings during which proposals will be reviewed and scored collectively.

Scoring will be on a 100-point scale.

Proposal Scoring Points
Executive Summary 5
Needs Statement 20
CAPACITY 30
Strategic Plan 40
Budget and Budget Narrative 5
TOTAL 100

2. Review and Selection Process.

As described in the Criteria section above, scoring will be on a 100-point scale. Scoring will not be the sole award criterion. The Department reserves the right to consider other factors such as: geographical distribution, ICQ and PRA results, demonstrated need, past performance as a state grantee, etc. While recommendations of the review panel will be a key factor in the funding decisions, the Department maintains final authority over funding decisions and considers the findings of the review panel to be non-binding recommendations. Any internal documentation used in scoring or awarding of grants shall not be considered public information.

Final award decisions will be made by the Director of the Division of Family and Community Services at the recommendation of the Associate Director for the Office of Early Childhood Development.

The Department reserves the right to negotiate with successful applicants to adjust award amounts, targets, etc.

3. Merit-Based Evaluation Appeal Process.

  1. Competitive grant appeals are limited to the evaluation process. Evaluation scores may not be protested. Only the evaluation process is subject to appeal and shall be reviewed by IDHS' Appeal Review Officer (ARO).
  2. Submission of Appeal.
  • An appeal must be submitted in writing to Nakisha Hobbs, who will send to the ARO for consideration.
  • An appeal must be received within 14 calendar days after the date that the grant award notice has been published.
  • The written appeal shall include at a minimum the following:
  • The name and address of the appealing party;
  • Identification of the grant; and
  • A statement of reasons for the appeal.

 3.  Response to Appeal.

  • The DHS will acknowledge receipt of an appeal within fourteen (14) calendar days from the date the appeal was received.
  • DHS will respond to the appeal within 60 days or supply a written explanation to the appealing party as to why additional time is required.
  • The appealing party must supply any additional information requested by DHS within the time period set in the request

  4.  Resolution

  • The ARO shall make a recommendation to the Agency Head or designee as expeditiously as possible after receiving all relevant, requested information.
  • In determining the appropriate recommendation, the ARO shall consider the integrity of the competitive grant process and the impact of the recommendation on the State Agency.
  • The Agency will resolve the appeal by means of written determination.
  • The determination shall include, but not be limited to:
    1. Review of the appeal;
    2. Appeal determination; and
    3. Rationale for the determination.

F. Award Administration Information

1. State Award Notices

It is anticipated that Applicants will be notified by the Department regarding funding decisions. The successful applicant will receive an email alerting them of the Notice of State Award (NOSA) distributed by the awarding agency prior to issuance of a grant agreement. The NOSA will specify the terms and conditions of the award. The Notice of State Award is an authorizing document and must be signed by the grants officer (or equivalent) and submitted electronically by email to Ana Maria Accove at anamaria.accove@illinois.gov . The NOSA is not equivalent to an agreement with the Department to commence providing service. Successful applicants will receive the FY 2020 Community Service Agreement for their signature and return. The release of this NOFO does not compel the Department of Human Services to make an award.

2. Required Reporting

  • The Provider will furnish monthly financial reports, by completing and submitting the Periodic Financial Report (PFR) - to the Department and a copy to the AOK Networks State Administrator in alignment with the approved budget by the 15th of the month following the reporting period.
  • The Provider will record all efforts completed toward identified objectives in the AOK Connect reporting database monthly, submitting semi-annual Periodic Performance Reports (PPR) to update the Department on the Network's progress. The provider will also submit any additional documentation of efforts as request by the state administrator.
  • The Provider will participate in process and outcome evaluation services provided by the designated contractor as determined necessary by the Department.

3. Payment Terms

  1. Payments will be issued on a reimbursement basis and will consider all previously submitted documented expenditures.
  2. The Department will compare the amount of the prospective payments made to date with the documented expenditures provided to the Department by the Provider. In the event the documented services provided by the Provider do not justify the level of award being provided to the Provider, future payments may be withheld or reduced until such time as the services documentation provided by the Provider equals the amounts previously provided to the Provider. Failure of the Provider to provide timely, accurate and sufficiently detailed documentation will result in delayed payments and may result in a reduction to the total award.
  3. The final payment from the Department under this Agreement shall be made upon the Department's determination that all requirements under this Agreement have been completed, which determination shall not be unreasonably withheld. Such final payment will be subject to adjustment after the completion of a review of the Provider's records as provided in the Agreement.  In the event payments made by the Department to the provider exceed the total amount of provider reported and Department authorized expenditures, the provider will be required to issue a repayment to the Department in an amount equal to the overpayment.

G. State Awarding Agency Contact(s)

Ana Maria Accove, Program Administrator

IDHS, Division of Family & Community Services

401 S. Clinton 4th Floor

Chicago, Illinois 60607

anamaria.accove@illinois.gov

Phone: 312-793-2748

H. Other Information, if applicable

Mandatory Forms -- Required for All Agencies

  1. Uniform State Grant Application (pdf)
  2. Network Capacity Template (docx)
  3. Identified Child or Family Outcome Template (docx)
  4. Information and Referral Template for Communities without an Existing AOK Network (docx)
  5. Information and Referral Template for Communities with an existing AOK Network (docx) NEW 4/12/2019