Application Process


  • If the deadline falls on a weekend/holiday, applications are due by 5:00PM on the following business day.
  • Fall Cycle: October 1 by 5:00 PM
  • Spring Cycle: February 1 by 5:00 PM


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

Proposal Requirements

All applicants (for both Small and Large Grants) must complete the online application, through which applicants must also upload the following attachments:

  1. IRS determination letter of organization, or of organization’s fiscal sponsor/agent
  2. Most recent audit of organization, or of organization’s fiscal sponsor/agent
  3. Project budget for which funds are being requested
  4. Organization’s budget for the current year
  5. Most recent grant report
    Report on the outcomes of the most recent CCF grant received. Required for organizations who received funding from CCF in the prior fiscal year (July 1 – June 30)
  6. Story of impact [NEW]
    Please provide 1 or more stories that help us understand your program’s impact from a constituent’s perspective. If possible, please include a high resolution photo of your program in action. (If photos are included please be sure you have permission to share them publicly and include photo credits if needed).

Additional requirements for Large Grant Proposals (over $5,000):

In addition to the above requirements, organizations applying for a Large Grant must upload the following files (within the online application):

  1. Statement of organization’s goals, track record and impact (please limit to 1 page)
  2. Summary and description of the specific project for which funds are being requested (please limit to 5 pages), including:
    • Evidence of need or opportunity (include research basis or best practices)
    • Goals, activities, expected outcomes
    • Who will benefit and how (provide input or feedback from community/clients)
    • How will you measure the program’s success?

Review Process

Community Fund grants are competitive and selection is based on the following criteria:

Strength of the Proposed Project or Investment

  • Addresses a demonstrated community or organizational need or opportunity
  • Likelihood of success and impact on the community

Applicant(s) Organizational Capacity

  • Leadership of organization and project
  • Systems delivery / financial health

Proposals are reviewed by staff, community reviewers, and the Foundation’s Distribution Committee and put forward as recommendations to the Foundation Board for approval.

Grantee Expectations

  • Grant year-end report that shares progress, lessons, and impact
  • 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