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Coforma
Project
Equity

Connecting Low-Income Families to Childcare Grants During the Pandemic

We created a website and application with 335forNC that allowed nearly 25,000 North Carolina families to access childcare relief funds during COVID-19.

Thousands of Families in Need

Client name:
335forNC
Partner name(s):
Charlotte Center for Legal Advocacy, Legal Aid of North Carolina, Robinson Bradshaw
Delivery Date:
December 14, 2020

Families most in need of help with remote learning and childcare expenses were set to receive nothing.

North Carolina’s Extra Credit Grants provided checks for $335 to eligible North Carolina families to help with remote learning and child care expenses incurred due to the pandemic. When a group of legal advocates discovered thousands of families in need had missed out on the grants, they pursued a legal remedy that would give families who were excluded a chance to receive assistance. Coforma onboarded a team overnight, developed a functional application in three days, and provided security and maintenance to the live site enabling the processing of almost 25,000 applications over a period of a few weeks.

Coforma was a great partner to work with under extreme time constraints to quickly develop a usable, plain language, secure website that could accept applications for a specific pandemic relief program. They were technically competent and highly responsive.
Kenneth Schorr Executive Director Charlotte Center for Legal Advocacy

A Collaborative Approach

We worked closely with legal advocacy teams and a PR team to bring the 335forNC site and application to thousands of families.

335forNC wanted to guarantee every family who qualifies for the North Carolina Extra Credit Grants had the opportunity to receive assistance. Due to their tax filing status, many of these families were left out of the original grant funds distribution. Coforma supported this goal by creating a form that was intuitive and easy for people to complete, using plain language wherever possible, and making the back-end data transfer process straightforward for administrators. We also developed a Spanish language version of each of the website pages and form fields, making the application more accessible to a wider audience. We iteratively developed the application, working collaboratively, openly, and transparently with project partners throughout the life of the project.

A Secure, Dual-Language Website

In just three days, we developed a dual-language web application for processing that met legal requirements, served applicants’ needs, and enabled seamless call center support.

Illustration of a zoom window

Slack, Zoom, and G suite enabled collaboration with project stakeholders.

Close Collaboration with Stakeholders

We connected frequently with stakeholders and advocates to understand what the application needed to achieve. We released the first iteration of the simple brand and website in just three days. Over a three-week period, we made continual improvements, coordinating with stakeholders and their communications team with each iteration.

Scrolling animation of using the grant application

A straightforward and secure application.

Focused, Secure Data Management

We added tools to improve the site administration interface, including the ability to securely export sensitive data while keeping identity hidden and weekly counts of applications.

Even if you have more than one qualifying child, you only need to enter information for one qualifying child to qualify for the grant.

Plain language in English and Spanish made legal requirements easier to understand.

Plain Language and Spanish

We made the application accessible to as many people as possible, creating the site in both English and Spanish. We tested each version of the site to ensure clarity and readability for users.

Man holding his two kids in front of their home

Thousands of families initially missed out on the grants.

25,000 Applications in Three Weeks

Nearly 25,000 applications were processed in just three weeks, totalling more than $8 million that went to families in need.

Project Team

  • Andrew Norcross Andrew Norcross Engineer
  • Andy Birch Andy Birch Designer
  • Angela Hopkins Angela Hopkins Copywriter & Editor
  • Eduardo Ortiz Eduardo Ortiz Technologist & Advisor
  • Yoni Knoll Yoni Knoll Project Lead