2019-20 Funding Round

2019-20 Funding Round Overview

The Portland Children’s Levy was created in 2002 and must be approved by voters every five years. Voters most recently renewed the Levy in Spring 2018 for another five-year term beginning July 1, 2019.  PCL typically launches a competitive funding round after the Levy is renewed to make investments in programs serving children and families in Portland. 

In preparation for the next competitive funding process set to begin in Fall 2019, PCL has focused on compiling key local data on Portland’s children, revising its grantmaking process and engaging community members and service providers in discussion on needed services.   To get up to speed on these initiatives, click on the links below to read the full reports and check out the Levy renewal process timeline at the bottom of this page.  

Portland’s Children: Overview of Key Local Data. This report from Fall 2018 summarizes data from various local and state sources and provides a current snapshot of children in Portland -- who they are and population-level outcomes -- in the context of the Levy’s six program areas.

Grantmaking Improvement Study by Portland State University. This Winter 2018 study looked at the major phases of the Levy grantmaking process (pre-application, application and decision-making), and included 30 recommendations to increase transparency and equity.  PSU researchers conducted interviews and focus groups of past applicants, current grantees, other funders and Allocation Committee members to create recommendations for change.  The Allocation Committee In May 2019 approved creation of a  Small Grants Fund to improve equity of access to Levy funding for smaller organizations. The Allocation Committee plans to complete decision-making on process changes by the end of June 2019.

A Community Engagement process was conducted by Empress Rules Equity Consulting and completed in April 2019.  Empress Rules surveyed community members and service providers on needs and priorities and hosted focus groups for deeper discussions with youth, parents and caregivers from diverse communities.  Survey and focus group findings are presented in a Community Engagement Executive Summary, Final Report and Appendix. 

Levy staff relied heavily on these findings, which focused on racial equity, diversity and inclusion, to help shape program area strategies for the next competitive funding round, along with the new Request for Investment (funding application).  Drafts of both documents were presented at the May 13th Allocation Committee meeting and the Levy is seeking public input on both by Friday, May 24th, as to incorporate into the drafts and bring back to the Committee at the June 3rd meeting for further review:
 Proposal for service strategies and priorities for next funding round per findings of Community Engagement Report AND Proposed changes to Request for Investment

Stay informed on upcoming meetings in City Hall Council Chambers!

June 3rd Allocation Committee Meeting

  • Decisions on structure/procedure for testimony process
  • Consider next iteration of service strategies/priorities
  • Consider next iteration of changes to Request for Investment
  • Proposals for changes to application review and Committee decision-making process per PSU report recommendations

June 17th Allocation Committee Meeting

  • Final decisions on all funding process issues including RFI revisions
  • Final decision on all service strategies and priorities

A Funding Round FAQ  can be found here.