California Chafee Grant

What is a California Chafee Grant?

The California Chafee Grant is free money for current or former California foster youth to help pay for college or career and technical training. Chafee Grants don’t have to be paid back. You may also use your grant to pay for child care, rent and transportation while you’re in school. A Chafee Grant is a federal and state funded grant subject to yearly availability of funds.

How do I qualify?

To qualify, you must:

• Be a current or former foster youth*
• Not have reached your 22nd birthday as of July 1 of the award year

*To qualify, foster youth dependency of the court must have been established between the ages of 16 and 18. KinGap youth who are or were eligible to receive Independent Living Program services, guardian placements and voluntary placements may not be eligible for the California Chafee Grant unless court dependency was established between the ages of 16 and 18.

How do I apply?

You must submit the California Chafee Grant Application and Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or California Dream Act Application (CADA).

• Submit the California Chafee Grant Application online, or complete the paper form and mail it.
• Submit the FAFSA or CA Dream Act Application

Note: Forms are year-specific. Be sure to complete the applications that correspond with the academic year you will be attending school.

What happens after I apply?

• The Commission will review your FAFSA or CADA and Chafee Grant Application.
• The California Department of Social Services (CDSS) may verify your foster status. If CDSS is not able to verify    your foster status, please complete the Foster Care Eligibility Certification Form and mail it.
• Your school’s financial aid office will determine your financial aid eligibility.
• Once all of the above is completed, the Commission will send you a letter if you are selected for an award.
• The school will verify payment eligibility and disburse the check to you.

Where can I use my Chafee Grant?

You can use your Chafee Grant at any eligible California college as well as colleges in other states. In California, you can attend:

• Career and technical schools
• California Community Colleges
• California State University campuses
• University of California campuses
• Independent
• Private colleges

What is required to receive your Chafee funds?

You must:

• Enroll in an eligible public or private college or university or technical school.
• Be enrolled at least half time.
• Enroll in a program at least one academic year long.
• Attend class regularly and maintain satisfactory academic progress or you may lose your Chafee Grant funds.

How do I renew my Chafee Grant?

If you receive a Chafee Grant, it may be renewed through your 23rd birthday. You do not need to reapply for your Chafee Grant each year; however, you must submit a FAFSA or CA Dream Application and your school must determine if you are still eligible.

The Commission may contact you for updated information. Be sure to respond to e-mails, letters or forms that you may receive.

For more information, contact our Foster Youth Success Initiative liaison:

Alyia Pilgrim
Feather River College
570 Golden Eagle Avenue
Quincy, CA 95971
Phone: (530) 283-0202 ext. 603
Fax: (530) 283-4659
Email Alyia

You can also visit the following websites for additional information:

Keep Up to Date with WebGrants4Students!

• Log on to to set up your account.
• Access information and manage your account 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
• You can also update your e-mail address, mailing address, telephone number or, school of attendance.

Visit the Commission’s Chafee Grant Web site at

E-mail your questions to

Call toll free 1-888-224-7268 Monday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. (PST)

Write or mail:
California Student Aid Commission
Specialized Programs Operations Branch
California Chafee Grant Program
P.O. Box 419029
Rancho Cordova, CA 95741-902