Responsive Grants

The 2018 Responsive Grant application process is closed. 

The Responsive Grant application process is open to all requests for organizational support and projects that serve our region. Three types of responsive grants are available: general operating support, project support, and capacity building support. There is only one grantmaking cycle per year for responsive grants from the Valley Community Foundation and its partner in philanthropy, The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven. 

Process Overview

The Responsive grant application review process occurs in two-stages and takes approximately six months.

During the first phase applications are reviewed by staff and community reviewers under grant staff guidance. Reviewers are recruited from the region across gender, age, ethnicity and background and may include past grantees, donors, representatives from area funders, subject matter experts, volunteers from the Neighborhood Leadership and New Haven Healthy Start programs and other community representatives.  

Each confidential application is reviewed by three people; a scoring metric (see samples below) is used to create a common framework from which decisions to move applications forward are made, and an average of all three scores determines an application’s overall score. Final decisions as to which applications move forward to the second stage are made by the Board with staff recommendations. After the first phase review, applicants are either moved forward to the second stage or denied. 

In the second stage, professional reviewers and staff analyze each application; analysis includes a site visit, document review and interviews with the applicant. Staff presents analysis and recommendations to the Board for discussion and a final decision. Notification of award or denial is sent by the end of October. Upon notification of awards, grant recipients are asked to sign an agreement delineating the terms of condition of the grant and payment plan.

Staff is available throughout the process to provide guidance and feedback to applicants.

General Operating Support (GOS) 

General Operating Support is defined as a grant made to further the general mission and work of an organization, rather than for a specific purpose or project. General Operating Support gives nonprofits flexibility to direct their spending where it is needed most and allows greater focus on achieving an organization’s mission.

Only organizations that have been incorporated for at least five years AND have received a Responsive grant from either The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven or the Valley Community Foundation are eligible to apply for a General Operating Support grant.

An applicant's giveGreater.org® profile will serve as part of the application. Each application is read by three people and scored using the GOS Application Merit Scoresheet.

Project Support

Project Support is defined as a grant made for a specific new or existing project. Project Support applications are available to organizations that are new to either The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven or the Valley Community Foundation and those organizations that have received a Responsive grant in the past.

If your organization is in need of support (up to $10,000) for innovative programs and urgent needs, click here for information about our Valley Needs and Opportunities grant process.

Each application is read by three people and scored using the Project Application Merit Scoresheet.

Capacity Building Support

Capacity Building Support is defined as a grant for short term financial assistance to build the infrastructure of an organization for long term success.  Requests for capacity building include but are not limited to board development, strategic planning, evaluation and capital expenditures including equipment, building renovations or relocation. 

An applicant's giveGreater.org® profile will serve as part of the application.

Each application is read by three people and scored using the Capacity Building Application Merit Scoresheet.

For All Responsive Grant Applicants

Nonprofits demonstrating strong management and a good track record of accomplishments will be given priority consideration to receive a Responsive grant. Refer to The Community Foundation's Guiding Principles for Nonprofits: Leadership, Evaluation and Sound Management.

Documents that may be needed to complete your application (depending on type of grant for which funding is applied):

Project support is defined as a grant made for a specific new or existing projects. 

Project support applications are available to organizations that are new to either the Valley Community Foundation or The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven and those organizations that have received a responsive grant in the past.  

Each application is read by three reviewers and scored using the Project Application Merit Scoresheet.

Deadline for 2018 has now passed. 

Capacity building support is defined as a grant for short term financial assistance to build the infrastructure of an organization for long term success. Requests for capacity building include but are not limited to board development, strategic planning, evaluation and capital expenditures including equipment, building renovations or relocation.
 

Only organizations that have been incorporated for at least five years AND have received a Responsive Grant from either The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven or the Valley Community Foundation are eligible to apply for capacity building support. The giveGreater.org® profile will serve as part of the application.

Each application is read by three reviewers and scored using the Capacity Building Application Merit Scoresheet.

Deadline for 2018 is March 29th by 5:00 p.m. 

General operating support  (GOS) is defined as a grant made to further the general mission and work of an organization, rather than for a specific purpose or project. 

Only organizations that have been incorporated for at least five years AND have received a Responsive Grant from either The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven or the Valley Community Foundation are eligible to apply for general operating support.

General operating support gives nonprofits flexibility to direct their spending where it is needed most and allows greater focus on achieving an organization’s mission. Nonprofits demonstrating strong management and a good track record of accomplishments will be given priority consideration. 

Refer to the Guiding Principles for Nonprofits: Leadership, Evaluation and Sound Management. The giveGreater.org® profile will serve as part of the application.

Each application is read by three reviewers and scored using the GOS Application Merit Scoresheet.

Deadline for 2018 is March 29th by 5:00 p.m. 


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