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2019 Small Grants Program application Guidelines


Funding Guidelines:

  • As a general rule, individual grants are expected to fall in the $3,000- $15,000 range.
  • Projects/programs must advance Maine children’s health.
  • Almost all forms of grants will be considered (e.g., program grants, capacity building grants, challenge grants, matching grants, etc.). However, as a rule, the Foundation would not expect to make capital grants (e.g., funding for building, etc.), or grants to individuals.
  • Successful applicants typically have strong track records and take approaches that are creative but well grounded (e.g., in data, theory, best practices, evaluation methods, etc.).
  • The Foundation does not fund organizations more frequently than every 3 years, even if different projects are proposed. (Example: An organization which received funding on 9/1/16 could not apply again for funding until the Spring 2019 application deadline for grants to be awarded on 9/1/19.)
  • The Foundation strongly prefers to fund organizations with budgets under $10 million.
  • In general, the Foundation looks for proposals that address Maine’s poorest and most underserved populations (e.g., low-income, rural, etc.).
  • The Foundation will not accept oral health proposals.

How to Apply for the 2019 Grant Cycle:

There is a two-step process for applying to the Small Grants Program -- a Letter of Interest (Step 1) and a Full Application (Step 2).  Letters of Interest are due by May 15, 2019.

Step 1:

Fill out the Letter of Interest form by clicking here. You will fill in information about the purpose of project/program, organizational history, mission/current programs, geographic area, and population served.

No later than May 22, 2019, you will receive an email from the Foundation, letting you know whether or not you have been invited to complete your application. If you do not receive an email by May 22, contact Emilie Knight, the Foundation’s Director of Small Grants, at emilie.m.knight@gmail.com.

Step 2:

If the Foundation invites you to complete an application, an email will be sent to you with additional instructions and directions to click on a link which will take you to a secure page where you will need to complete Part 2 of the application.

Part 1 of the application will already be filled out from the information you provided in the Letter of Interest. Review Part 1 to make sure the information is still correct, making any changes as necessary. At this time please also review the instructions on this “How to Apply” page of the Foundation’s website before you begin your full application.

The completed application requires the following:

  • Writing a Project Narrative (specifics below),
  • Listing organization board members,
  • Attaching your organizational operating budget (using pdf or xls, not docx), and,
  • Uploading a video (see instructions below).
The Project Narrative (1000 words or less) should address:
  • Description of project for which funding is sought,
  • Major goals/outcomes and key strategies,
  • Method of assessing project,
  • Project budget with budget narrative,
  • List of key personnel involved in project execution,
  • Other major sources of support at the time of application.

NOTE: Once you are in the online application, you will not be able to look ahead or go back and make changes. Please gather your materials and prepare to complete the application (by reviewing the application requirements above) before you enter the application system.

Guidelines for Making Your Video:

  • Please provide your own video which addresses the project for which you seek funding. Avoid using pre-made general videos.
  • Do not produce the video professionally but do check the filming for focus and orientation (e.g., film right-side up).
  • Please start the video uploading process well before the deadline; occasionally applicants need time for several tries at uploading before achieving success.
  • Keep the video to 3 minutes or under in length and keep video size to 25 MB or under.
  • Do not film in high resolution—file will be too large to upload; do not use zip files.
  • Use only these video formats: AVI, FLV, MP4, MOV, WMV.
  • In the video, describe your organization’s mission, and the project’s goal.
  • Explain the compelling need for the project, what problem is being addressed and why Foundation support is requested.
  • Communicate the passion and the commitment of the organization’s leaders and program staff for the project.
  • If possible, show the specific project in process for which funding is requested. If there is an aspect of the project which takes place in the field (e.g., outside or in a classroom) please try to include footage of those scenes.
  • Click here for sample video.
  • Click here for sample video.

If you have questions, contact Emilie Knight, the Foundation’s Director of Small Grants, at emilie.m.knight@gmail.

Timeline for 2019 Grant Cycle:

  April 15, 2019: Foundation Announcement Calling for Letters of Interest
  May 15, 2019: Letters of Interest Due to Foundation
  May 22, 2019: Foundation Invites Selected Applicants to Apply
  June 30, 2019: Completed Applications Due to Foundation
  September 15, 2019: Grantees Notified by Foundation