Prevention Action Alliance

CARES Grants Available for OCI Members

College and university students face several stressful uncertainties. They are worried about getting sick with COVID-19, about whether they should visit their families for the holidays, about their living situations, about their grades and class structure, and more. The pandemic has led to a rise in anxiety, depression, and suicidal ideation among students. In short, today’s students are under great stress, and their need for mental health and counseling support services is great.

As part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, the Ohio College Initiative at Prevention Action Alliance, the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services, and the Ohio Department of Higher Education are pleased to announce this unique funding opportunity for OCI’s member institutions.

Up to $1 million in funds will be made available to OCI members to improve student access to mental health services through the formation of sustainable collaborations between campuses and community behavioral health partners. By leveraging behavioral health services expertise, expanding infrastructure needs for telehealth, distributing awareness resources, providing training to existing campus networks (for example, the Greek system), these funds will spur the formation of new partnerships while improving access to mental health services for college students.

Grantees will be tasked with identifying the specific needs of their campus communities and will participate in a virtual training session to learn more about the Healthy Campus 2020 Framework, a tool to use in the development of campus multidisciplinary teams to support students’ mental health wellness.

You can apply by emailing the CARES Higher Education Grant Application to with a W-9 form and a plan of activity. We recommend that you review the Healthy Campus 2020 Framework before applying.

All applications must be received by November 20, 2020.

Questions? Register for an Informational Webinar

Two webinars to answer questions about the CARES grants for OCI members will be held on Thursday, November 5 at 9 a.m. and on Wednesday, November 11 at 1 p.m. These webinars are open to anyone interested in applying, and program staff will be available during the webinar to answer any questions you may have about this funding opportunity.

>>> Register for the November 11 Webinar