Apply for a $100,000 family literacy grant

Scripps Howard Foundation, Greater Cincinnati Foundation and WCPO Channel 9 on Your Side are continuing their charge to break the cycle of poverty through literacy. The organizations are leveraging resources to provide a $100,000 grant to a nonprofit that supports family literacy in underserved neighborhoods in Greater Cincinnati.

The grant will be awarded to a single nonprofit that brings books and other literacy resources into Tri-state neighborhoods in need – whether it’s keeping kids supplied with books during the summer, supplementing literacy outreach throughout the school year, equipping toddlers with their first books, or other efforts addressing the literacy needs of our community.

Nonprofits may submit letters of intent through Jan. 22 at noon via the Scripps Howard Foundation's grant site.

We believe in bolstering children’s literacy skills to support them in reaching their full potential and understand the power of giving books to children experiencing poverty. The grant will fund a single organization that will equip children with strong reading skills today to ensure brighter futures.

The program must provide ongoing support, serve families living in poverty, and develop deep relationships with parents to be their child's first teacher.

Eligible programs will:

  • Focus on literacy skills of children from birth through third grade – or a subset of that age range
  • Empower parents with skills, confidence and tools to help develop their children’s reading skills
  • Understand the needs the families living in poverty face by ensuring access to programing – either by bring resources to the community or offering transportation solutions
  • Provide quantitative and qualitative measurement outcomes for both parents and children
  • Illustrate prior program success or how new programs are based on successful models
  • Demonstrate the ability to sustain the program at the end of the grant period

Additional consideration will be given to organizations that partner with other organizations that provide additional resources that children and their families need.

Applicants may submit either a one-year or two-year grant request. The grant amount will be the same level regardless of grant period.

For this application, a parent is defined as an adult caregiver --- mother, father, grandparent, foster parent, guardian --- who lives with and cares for a child(ren).

Why family literacy

Education is the pathway out of poverty. Greater Cincinnati is ranked No. 4 nationally in child poverty, with nearly half of children estimated to be living below the federal poverty level, according to The National Center for Children in Poverty.

Research shows that the negative effects of children growing up in poverty can be significantly impacted through early childhood interventions, including family literacy. Children raised in homes that promote family literacy grow up to be better readers and do better in school than children raised in homes where literacy is not promoted, leading to their long-term success in school and life.

The Scripps Howard Foundation is proud to partner with Greater Cincinnati Foundation

2019 will mark the third year that Scripps Howard Foundation and Greater Cincinnati Foundation have partnered to provide a $100,000 family literacy grant. Princeton City Schools in Cincinnati received our first grant to transform a school bus into a book mobile. In 2019, Brighton Center in Northern Kentucky was awarded the grant to further its program to educate pre-school age children in their homes.

As the region’s leading community foundation, Greater Cincinnati Foundation connects people with purpose in an eight-county region in Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana. GCF is leading the charge toward a more vibrant Greater Cincinnati for everyone – now, and for generations to come. Learn more at