Grant Guidelines & FAQ
Grant applications for the 2020 cycle must be submitted online by Friday, March 6, 2020. We strongly urge you to discuss your grant proposal ideas with OICF before you submit a final application. Contact OICF by phone at 360-376-6423 or email at email@example.com.
2020 Grant Application
OICF’s mission is to “foster philanthropy to enhance the quality of life on Orcas Island.” OICF’s GiveOrcas annual spring catalog, together with our GiveOrcas holiday catalog, is one way we try to build awareness about the good work you do in our community, and raise funds to support your programs. With 100+ nonprofits on Orcas, not every organization can be included in every cycle. Our hope is to strengthen as many organizations as possible. In 2019 over $3.1 million was distributed through OICF—$232,015 in the GiveOrcas annual grants process. Consider this application an opportunity to showcase your organization and enhance awareness of the important work you do to make Orcas Island a healthy, vibrant community.
Important Updates to the OICF Grant Process
Grant requests should be no greater than $25,000; if you have needs that require more funding please contact OICF. While all grant applications will be considered, OICF will prioritize proposals based the following criteria:
- Does the proposal address a specific need?
- What is the likelihood for success of the proposal?
- Is there duplication of services offered on Orcas for this service/request?
- Does the proposal serve a large number of islanders?
OICF will consider applications that cover part of a nonprofit’s critical or general operating funds. OICF wishes to help nonprofits become healthy, effective, and efficient—and be good stewards of community resources. We will likely not consider multiple requests in the same cycle, unless your organization serves as a fiscal sponsor for program(s).
All application questions have a 1000 character limit. Please stay within this limit and remember that an OICF Grants Committee member will interview you and you’ll be able to elaborate on the details of your request at that time.
2020 Grants Cycle Checklist and Schedule
- The 2019 Grant Application package must be received no later than Friday, March 6, 2020, including:
- Completed Word.doc application, saved as pdf
- Completed online application (https://oicf.fcsuite.com/erp/donate/list/request), including an image
- Additional materials for if request is over $3,500
- Applications will be reviewed in late March. A knowledgeable contact person from your organization should be available from March 12 – 30. A member of the grants committee will contact your organization to schedule a meeting and site visit, if applicable.
- GiveOrcas.org spring catalog will be open for donations April 29 – May 13; your organization should plan to actively partner with OICF to advertise your request and recruit donations.
- Grant recipients will be notified in late May.
- Grant checks will be presented at the Awards Reception on May 21, 2020.
- Grant reports for 2020 grants are due January, 2021. All successful proposal of $10,000 or more will meet with a committee member and OICF board or staff member mid-year to discuss the progress of the project and the impact of your efforts.
Who qualifies for OICF Annual Grants?
- Applicants must be qualified nonprofit organizations (usually Internal Revenue Code section 501(c)(3) organizations). No grants are made to individuals, private foundations, or for-profit enterprises.
- We are precluded from making grants to any religious organization if the funds would be used in whole or in part for religious purposes.
- Grants are not made to any group that discriminates on the basis of age, color, race, national origin, gender identity, marital status, sensory, mental or physical ability, sexual orientation or religious beliefs.
- No grants are made to conduit organizations which pass funds through to other organizations for distribution to ultimate beneficiaries of their own choosing (e.g., United Way).
- Grant requests are not retroactive; i.e. requests must be for an project or activity that is planned for the future.
- Each organization can make only one request per grant cycle, unless there are programs within your organization for whom your org is a fiscal sponsor. See: Fiscal Sponsorship info / Fiscal Sponsor Agreement form.
What types of projects are funded?
- One time, non-recurring expenditures, specific capital needs, and project-related expenses for programs are given equal consideration.
- Part of a nonprofit’s general operating funds if the applicant can demonstrate compelling need.
- OICF encourages nonprofit applicants to work collaboratively in developing projects to benefit the Orcas Island community. If an application is being made for a collaborative effort, it must include letters of support from the Boards of all organizations involved.
- Requests for funding for projects of two or three years’ duration will be considered. Funds may be dispersed yearly, subject to reporting, due diligence and other requirements imposed by OICF.
- No grants are made for political purposes.
- No grants are made for general fund drives, for endowments, or for fundraising expenses or charitable appeals.
- Think about fun projects, too, perhaps more whimsical for excitement and joy. The combination of serious and fun proposals is what make the catalog model successful.
- No requests for scholarships.
- Grant approval is based on an evaluation of the significance of a project, its purpose, its likelihood of success, and its potential benefit to the Orcas Island community.
- OICF has limited funds available, and a large number of requests for valuable projects. While recognizing that multi-year funding may enable an organization or a project to succeed, we discourage nonprofits from applying repeatedly for continuing funding of the same project. If an applicant predicts that a project will require more than one year to succeed, we encourage the applicant to apply for a multi-year grant.
- Please be concise when composing the application; supply all requested attachments including a current financial statement and annual budget for requests over $3500.
- We may ask to review your organization’s most recent IRS Form 990, but please do not submit the 990 with your application.
All reporting requirements are included with the letter of notification; grant reports are due January, 2021. Successful proposals of $10,000 or more will meet with a committee member and OICF board or staff member mid-year to discuss the progress of the project and the impact of your efforts.Questions?
Please contact Hilary Canty or Kate Long at OICF if you have questions along the way: 360-376-6423 or firstname.lastname@example.orgemail@example.com.
How do I know if my organization is eligible for a grant from OICF?
What organizations are not eligible to receive grants?
Are grant applications limited to capital items only?
Does OICF favor applications for specific causes or types of projects?
Can my group apply for two different projects in the same grant cycle?
My group’s project was funded last year; can we apply again for the same project?
How do I find out about the grants process and timeline for submission of a proposal?
I’ve never written a grant before – Help!
What happens after I submit my grant application?
Where does the money for OICF grants come?
- Distribution earnings from OICF’s Community Endowment Fund, or
- Funding from our “Partners in Philanthropy program.” During our GiveOrcas campaign, Partners in Philanthropy donors can contribute directly to grants on the approved and ranked list provided by the Grants Committee, or to a pool of funds to be allocated by the Grants Committee.