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    SMALL GRANTS GUIDELINES 2017-08-21T21:27:51+00:00

    Application Process

    The Cambridge Community Foundation’s Small Grants are open to applications for support in responding to community needs and opportunities.  Awards of up to $5,000 are made on a competitive basis, via a set of minimal application requirements.

    • Deadline: October 1 or February 15 — by 5:00 PM.  If deadline falls on a weekend or holiday, applications are due by 5:00PM on the following business day.
    • Awards announced:
      • Fall grant announcement after the November board meeting.
      • Spring grant announcement after the March board meeting.


    Only tax-exempt 501(c)3 organizations with a program serving the people of Cambridge, MA. The Cambridge Community Foundation does not make grants to individuals or fund capital projects.

    Proposal Requirements

    • Online submission of Proposal Summary Sheet , via Google Forms.
    • Email supporting material to
      • IRS determination letter or proof of fiscal sponsorship
      • Most recent audit. Nonprofit organizations with budgets under $500,000 may submit a financial statement that is either reviewed or audited by an independent certified public accountant (CPA)
      • For organizations who receive a grant from the Foundation in year prior to their application, a final report of project activities and outcomes

    Review Process

    The Cambridge Community Foundation’s Community Fund grants are competitive and selection is based on the following criteria:

    • Strength of the Proposed Project or Investment
      1. Addresses a demonstrated community or organizational need or opportunity
      2. Has a strong likelihood of success and impact on the community
    • Applicant(s) Organizational Capacity
      1. Leadership capacity and experience of person leading the work
      2. Organization track record of service delivery and impact
      3. Overall financial health

    Proposals are reviewed by staff and the Distribution Committee which is comprised of Cambridge Community Foundation board members who have broad knowledge of the community. The Committee puts forward recommendations to the Foundation Board for approval.

    Applicants not awarded a grant may request feedback on their proposal and are eligible to apply again the following year.

    Grantees Expectations

    • Grant year-end reports that share progress, lessons and constituent stories and images (if applicable)
    • Maintenance of organization’s tax exempt, 501(c)(3), status
    • Participation in feedback surveys
    • Meetings with Cambridge Community Foundation and other supporters, as requested
    • Referencing Cambridge Community Foundation support in media advisories, press releases, public events, and social media.