CLiF offers a unique grant opportunity to help strengthen relationships and spark engagement within communities across Vermont and New Hampshire. Learn more about the Community Building grants we designed to achieve this goal by using reading and writing to bring people together.

Coming out of the pandemic, we are eager to offer ways to help build bridges and bring people together in ways that feel safe, meaningful, and educational. For 2023, the Community Building grants offer grantees the option to select from different opportunities that use reading and writing to connect kids to their communities while inspiring a love of literacy:

  • Reading Buddies for Seniors – includes a CLiF presenter visit, an onsite library, and a two book giveaway.
  • 1000 Books Before Kindergarten – includes a CLiF presenter visit, an onsite library, and a two book giveaway. Target audience is ages 0-5 and their caregivers.
  • Family Engagement – includes a CLiF presenter, book giveaway, literacy workshop, and/or reimbursement for food/supplies at an event of your design to engage with children and their families around literacy. Maximum grant of $1000.
  • Design your own! What project will bring your students into contact with their community with literacy as an engagement point? What about re-connecting with an audience that has been out of touch due to the pandemic? How about multi-cultural programming to bring people together and enhance understanding of each other? Are there inclusive ways to serve your community around reading and writing that could use CLiF’s support? Maximum grant of $1000.


An organization, program, or facility must meet these requirements to apply for this year’s Community Building Grant:

  • Community/nonprofit organizations, youth-serving programs, libraries, or schools located in New Hampshire or Vermont.
  • Your project must serve a community with at least 35% of students qualifying for free/reduced lunch. Your application must show how you will partner with CLiF’s target audience of children ages 0-12 in under-resourced or under-represented communities.
  • At least 30 kids must participate in the program, either virtually or in-person.
  • Organizations with an enthusiastic and organized coordinator willing to collaborate with CLiF on planning, organizing, and communicating about your project.

Goals of the Community Building Grants

  • Build empathy for others by connecting with new groups
  • Create excitement around sharing books and writing
  • Inspire students and adults to read and write for pleasure
  • Encourage an appreciation for similarities and differences
  • Support all kinds of young readers and writers
  • Ensure children have high-quality books of their own at home
  • Engage parents/caregivers and encourage reading and writing at home

How CLiF Will Select Grant Recipients

Criteria include:

  • Demonstrated need and excitement
  • Enthusiasm, creativity, and collaboration exhibited by the partners
  • Clear demonstration of how this grant will benefit students and their communities

Because of the nature of this grant, we are looking for partners who can act quickly and implement activities for Spring 2023. Applications were due on March 1, 2023. Applicants will be notified if they received a grant by March 13, 2023. Grant funds must be spent by June 30, 2023 but it is okay to have activities/events happen in the summer.

CLiF has served over 350,000 children since 1998.

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