First Literacy Lab

First Literacy Lab  grants provide funding for the development, trial, and implementation of innovative Adult Basic Education (ABE) resources and practices. Annual grants of up to $5,000 are open to all nonprofit ABE and ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) programs in Massachusetts.

Grant projects focus on fresh approaches to instruction that improve the student experience, strengthen programs, and enrich the ABE field. There are many allowable uses for grants, including curriculum development, innovative classes, digital literacy, or program-wide special projects.

First Literacy Lab grants are unique in the field, providing

  • Flexible funding 
  • On-site technical assistance and support
  • Broad-based sharing of new curriculum resources
  • Direct adult learner impact

Supporting teachers, powering innovation

First Literacy Lab FY2020 RFP and Grant Application

The FY2020 RFP and grant application are now available at the links below. If you’d like to receive a Microsoft Word version of the application that can be used as a template, please contact Grant proposals are due on Wednesday, April 24th, at 5:00 p.m.  

First Literacy Lab FY2020 RFP (.pdf)
First Literacy Lab FY2020 Grant Application (.pdf)

First Literacy Lab Project Presentations

Each Fall, First Literacy hosts a half-day mini-conference where recipients present the results of their First Literacy Lab grants. This event is free and open to anyone interested in adult basic education. Each session is brief, and networking time is built into the event. Join our mailing list to make sure you receive an invitation to the next Literacy Lab Project Presentation event, which will be held on October 25, 2019.

“Your contribution will enable MUA and First Literacy to achieve the mutual goal of providing participatory, learner-centered education that provides adult learners with the opportunity to improve their lives, to strengthen their parenting skills, and to reach their educational and professional goals.”

– Mujeres Unidas Avanzando, First Literacy Lab grant recipient

Learn About Our
Literacy Lab Grant Recipients.

The First Literacy Lab grants for the 2018–2019 funding cycle support many hands-on and interactive curriculum ideas. These innovative, teacher-led projects incorporate everything from poetry and theater, to civics and science. Students will be getting out of the classroom, getting up on stage, and getting involved in their schools and communities.

Click here to view the full list of recipients and their project descriptions.

Apply for a Grant.

First Literacy Lab FY2020 RFP

First Literacy Lab FY2020 Grant Application

Questions about an idea for your grant proposal? Contact Program Manager, Evonne Peters, at or call 617-482-3336.

Ask a Question.

For more information about First Literacy Lab grants, please contact Program Manager, Evonne Peters, at or call 617-482-3336.