Work With Us

Annual RFP process

With Smart Start funds, SSMC supports evidence-based & evidence-informed programs for children ages prenatal through five years and their families. The application process  for the 2022-2023 funding cycle (July 1, 2022 June 30, 2023) will begin in December/January. 

Check back soon for more details!

Innovation Grant Process

Smart Start of Mecklenburg County's Innovation Grants support efforts committed to championing equitable access and opportunities for all in early childhood. We value change that's centered on community, collaboration, and collective action as integral to shifting entrenched power structures. Smart Start will fund projects that engage community voices, particularly communities of color, to build equitable solutions.

These funds will develop innovative projects to help us come closer to our vision that every child in Mecklenburg County enters kindergarten health and is ready to succeed. The grants focus on rapid cycle, evidence-based or evidence-informed projects that will lead to the identification of outcome disparities for vulnerable families and the fall-out of pandemic response on preschool-aged children.

We are excited to announce the next cycle of our Innovation Grants, with pre-applications being accepted now through October 21st.

Please visit this link for additional information on the process and key dates.

Bidding Opportunities

Additional opportunities to work with Smart Start can be found here as the needs arise.


Our team, together with the agencies we fund, ensure that children turn five ready to thrive. If you are one of our valued direct service providers, check back soon for details on how to access the toolkit!