Request for Proposal – Communications Plan and Promotional Materials

Posted 2 weeks ago

Brief Project Overview

Child Care Services Association (CCSA) is seeking a consultant/firm experienced in not-for-profit public relations, marketing and communications to develop a communication plan and promotional materials related to early childhood homelessness and related systems building efforts.

Background

Founded in 1974, Child Care Services Association’s (CCSA) vision is for all children to have equitable access to affordable, high quality early care and education to lay the foundation for successful life outcomes. To that end, CCSA provides free child care referrals, financial assistance to low-income families and professional development and technical assistance to child care programs. With spoonFULL, CCSA provides nutritious meals to children at child care centers, where they may eat 50-100 percent of their meals. Educational scholarships from CCSA’s T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® Scholarship Program give child care professionals the means to obtain an education and CCSA’s Child Care WAGE$® and Infant-Toddler Educator AWARD$® Plus programs supplement meager salaries.

For the past few years, Child Care Services Association (CCSA) has been sounding the alarm about early childhood homelessness and the accompanying risks to the development of young children. Our writing on this subject is extensive, including this Primer. The U.S. Department of Education’s 2020 Early Childhood Homelessness State Profiles indicates that more than 32,000 North Carolina children under 6 years of age experienced homelessness in 2018 (well before the pandemic-related housing crisis). This means that thousands of our state’s youngest children are facing adverse experiences known to have long-term negative effects on health and well-being before they even reach school age.

Children experiencing homelessness face multiple challenges, including family financial difficulties and protracted poverty, inadequate health care, potential abuse and neglect, exposure to violence and myriad other traumatic experiences. Homeless children are also more vulnerable to developmental delays and social emotional problems than their peers with stable housing. Given the negative impact of homelessness on young children, ensuring safe, stable housing and high-quality early learning for all NC children are two of the ten goals in the NC Early Childhood Action Plan, the state’s blueprint for systems change for young children.

The risks young children face while experiencing homelessness can be mitigated when relevant organizations work to meet homeless children’s needs (not just family needs), and/or work with others to affect systems change. CCSA is has two small, intertwined projects that help family shelters develop child-centered practices and environments and work with communities to build connections between early childhood sectors and housing/shelter sectors. As part of this effort, CCSA is seeking proposals from firms or individual designers (a vendor) to support these efforts with promotional pieces and a communications plan focused on the challenges of homelessness for young children and the value of building community systems to bridge the systems gaps in North Carolina.

Project Objectives and Scope of Work

CCSA is seeking a vendor experienced in not-for-profit communications to create materials and a marketing campaign focused on building awareness of the needs of young children (children from birth to 5 years of age) experiencing homelessness, as well as the value of supports and connections (e.g., early care and education programs, affordable housing). Key messages would likely include:

  • The prevalence of early childhood homelessness in North Carolina;
  • The impact of homelessness on children birth to 5 years old;
  • The value of enrolling children experiencing homelessness in child care and early learning programs; and
  • The need for affordable housing initiatives to include housing for families with young children.

Deliverables

  • Three to five key messages about early childhood homelessness that will serve as the focal point of the strategy
  • A communications plan
  • Infographics, fact sheets, social media posts and possibly a blog or two

The Proposal — Please describe the following:

  • The vendor’s interest in this project; 
  • The vendor’s knowledge and experience developing a communications plan, including promotional materials for cause-related messaging;
  • The vendor’s experience working with not-for-profit organizations;
  • The vendor’s commitment to working through the lens of diversity, equity and inclusion;
  •  A budget outlining consulting time, pricing for the promotional materials and other expenses as needed;
  • The unique capabilities/experiences that the vendor would bring to the process;
  • A brief description of vendor’s organization and the credentials and qualifications of key personnel who will be working directly on this project and;
  • Provide references from two not-for-profit organizations that have engaged the vendor in a similar work.

Responses

Responses to this RFP are due October 12, 2022 by 5:00 pm EDT. Send proposals to:

Mbasloe@childcareservices.org  and Cassw@childcareservices.org

The selected vendor will be notified upon review of applications.  

Funding

Funding for this 10-month project will be no more than $25,000, including any printed materials and additional expenses.

Criteria for Selection

Consultant/firm selection will be made based on the quality of the proposal and the best fit with CCSA. Contract negotiations will commence once the consultant/firm is chosen.