What is the Montana Children's Trust Fund?

The Legislature created the Children's Trust Fund in 1985 to serve as the lead agency in reducing and ultimately ending maltreatment of Montana children. The trust fund provides financial support to local programs across the state to prevent child abuse and neglect and strengthen families.

The trust fund is administratively attached to the Department of Public Health and Human Services and is administered by a seven-member volunteer board appointed by the Governor. Board members represent the geographic and cultural diversity of the state. Each member serves a three-year term and represents a profession involved in preventing child abuse and neglect.

How is the Children's Trust Fund financed?

The Children’s Trust Fund receives funding primarily from two sources:

  • Federal Community-based Child Abuse Prevention Grant (CBCAP). The CBCAP is a federal grant offered nationwide and dedicated to the prevention of child abuse and neglect. Both state and federal legislation mandate that the money be used to support nonprofit, community-based organizations that provide services and activities dedicated to preventing child abuse and neglect and strengthening families statewide.
  • State Special Revenue Account. This includes funds from donations made through the the income tax check-off on the Montana State Income Tax Return and from divorce filing fees.

Helping to prevent child abuse and neglect in Montana is easier than ever. You can donate to the Montana Children's Trust Fund! Your tax deductible gift will be used to provide grants to programs throughout the state that work to strengthen families and keep children safe from abuse.

The trust fund board distributes money annually through grants to community-based programs. The trust fund and the associated Endowment for Children welcome private donations. Donations may be made to: The Montana Children's Trust Fund, P.O. Box 4210, Helena, MT 59604-4210. Interested parties can also support the Montana Children's Trust Fund through the income tax check-off.


What are the priorities of the Montana Children's Trust Fund?

We believe that Montana’s children are the state’s greatest assets. Today’s children are the leaders of tomorrow. We hold their future in our hands, and our future is in their hands.
Top priorities for Montana Children’s Trust Fund are:

  • Funding effective, primary prevention programs in local communities throughout Montana and enhancing communities' capacity to prevent child abuse and neglect by allocating CTF funds annually for primary and secondary child abuse and neglect prevention programs to community-based organizations;
  • Supporting public education (such as conferences, workshops, and seminars) that increase participants' knowledge and understanding of child abuse and neglect prevention, and strengthening families and communities; and
  • Increasing positive parenting skills that ensure the health, safety and well-being of children.

The Montana Children’s Trust Fund’s priorities are fulfilled by increasing the number of parents and caregivers who are educated in healthy, positive, and protective child-raising skills. When families are supported, children are less likely to be at risk for child maltreatment and more likely to grow up happier and healthier.


How do local programs apply for a trust fund grant?

Community-based, nonprofit organizations that offer primary (universal) and secondary (targeted) prevention programs that reduce the risks of child maltreatment and strengthen families are eligible to apply for a grant. 

Please see the Funding Applications page for more information about current and future funding opportunities.