“WE LOVE [our consultant]!!!! It isn't just her knowledge of the process. It is her manner, her ability to work with so many different types of individuals. She can engage even the most disinterested or adversarial person....and they won't even know how she did it. She knows organizational structure, financing....and finally she has a great sense of HUMOR. She is also extremely realistic.”


Initiated in 2014, the Fund for Quality (FFQ) is a partnership between PHMC and Reinvestment Fund, supported by funding from the William Penn Foundation and Vanguard Strong Start for Kids Program. Through the provision of business planning support and facilities-related financing, Fund for Quality supports high-quality early care and education providers with expanding their services to reach more low-income families. Fund for Quality aims to expand the availability of high-quality ECE opportunities for low-income families living in the City of Philadelphia.

Awardees will benefit from the advantages of larger scale business operations, and in turn, will be instrumental in reducing the overwhelming unmet demand for high-quality early care and education services in Philadelphia.

Supports include:

  • typically, 6-month+ engagement with an expert consultation team for organizational planning and project predevelopment 
  • after successful planning phase, eligible to apply for capital grant awards of up to $300,000


  • Granted more than $2.67 million to 40 child care businesses for expansion (2014-2019) 
  • Created 2,389 new seats to date (2014-2019)
  • Created 171 full time and 30 part time jobs (2016-2019)
  • Provided $702,000 in expert consultation to support creation of new seats and improve business practices (2014-2020)
  • Provided 4,589 free hours of consultation to support creation of new seats and improve business practices (2014-2020)

Fund for Quality Awardees

CLICK HERE for a full list of awardees



  • Existing high-quality operator (Keystone STAR 3 and 4); if multi-site provider, more than 50% of sites at STAR 3 or greater
  • Non‐profit or for‐profit organization
  • Currently serving low‐income populations (defined as client population of at least 50% subsidy, or waitlist subsidy, Head Start or Pre‐K Counts) or able to demonstrate a commitment to serving low‐income families
  • Positive attendance trends and strong business plan
  • Organizational capacity for expansion


Fund for Quality has a rolling application, however based upon current capacity, FFQ applications are closed until further notice. Interested providers with expansion projects for new classroom start dates beyond September 2020, are still encouraged to submit an FFQ Contact Sheet for review and to receive the most update to date information on current capacity. Please note, Fund for Quality requires a submitted application at least nine (9) months prior to your intended open date.

For more information

For complete information on the Fund for Quality including eligibility, application and resources, please visit www.fundforquality.org or email us at fundforquality@phmc.org


Childcare Center Design Guide

This guide may provide a current operating childcare provider or a prospective provider with information for the planning and design of early childhood spaces that highlight the high-quality early childhood care, education, mission, and vision of the center. This guide compiles licensing and regulatory requirements established by the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services (DHS) and the City of Philadelphia, as well as best practice recommendations per the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), the Environment Rating Scale (ERS), and Caring for Our Children (CFOC).

Childcare Center Design Guide (July 2017)

Design for All

Design for All builds upon the 2017 publication concept that a childcare center should encourage ALL children’s social, physical, intellectual, creative, and emotional development through play and learning. Design for All also calls attention to the unique needs of adults with disabilities who work in or visit a childcare center. Design for All should be viewed as a collection of new items that current or prospective providers can incorporate into the renovation or design of a childcare facility. Similar to the 2017 Design Guide, implementing the Design for All concepts will require concurrent consideration of regulatory requirements and recommended practices.

NOTE: Information related to the purchase or construction of a center should be reviewed with professionals such as architects, engineers, zoning officials, and other licensing agencies that have jurisdiction over childcare centers prior to a purchase or when planning for a construction project.

Design for All (Jan 2020)