General Operating Grants
Funding Support Designed to Strengthen Smaller Pierce County Nonprofits
Strengthening Pierce County grants are general operating support funds. These flexible funds are designed to bolster smaller nonprofits who are addressing critical issues to sustain and build a stronger Pierce County.
Our goal is to support organizations with clear mission and programmatic alignment, who learn from their constituents, participate in field building activities, assess their impact, and share Greater Tacoma Community Foundation’s values.
If you have questions regarding this funding opportunity, please call the Foundation at 253-383-5622.
Now Accepting Applications – Deadline Friday, January 19, 4:00 PM
To start a new application:
To return to an existing application/account:
Total Funding Available
There is a total of $350,000 to distribute in 2018. Multi-year funding will not be available this year.
Grant Request Range
Grant size is dependent on organizational budget size according to the following table:
|Annual Organizational Budget||Available Request Amount|
These grants are designed to support nonprofit organizations and do not support individuals, school-based clubs, or capital projects. However, schools and government agencies may apply.
Applicants must meet the following qualifications to be eligible for a Strengthening Pierce County grant:
- Organizations must be aligned with GTCF’s values.
- Programming must serve residents of Pierce County, Washington.
- Annual operating budget for Pierce County programming must be $1M or less.
- Organizations must not discriminate on the basis of age, race, color, religion, sexual orientation, physical or mental disabilities, gender or national origin. Organizations must be inclusive with clients, volunteers, and staff.
- Nonprofit applicants must have applied to be listed in GTCF’s nonprofit directory
- Applicants must be current on all final reports for grants previously funded from Greater Tacoma Community Foundation.
Organizations that have never received a grant from the Community Foundation before or that haven’t applied for a grant in the past three years are highly encouraged to contact GTCF prior to applying.
GTCF’s Vice President of Grants and Initiatives Gina Anstey is available to answer specific questions about our grant programs via phone at the following days and times:
- Tuesday, November 28, 11:00 AM – 1:00 PM
- Thursday, December 14, 10:00 AM – Noon
- Wednesday, December 20, 11:00 AM – 1:00 PM
- Friday, January 5, 9:00 AM – 11:00 AM
- Thursday, January 11, 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Nonprofits continue to tell us that general operating support is essential and they share how vital flexible dollars are to their continued success.
We believe that operating and administrative funds are critical to the overall health of an organization. General operating dollars help ensure that nonprofits have the resources they need to carry out their missions. Additionally, these general operating funds have moved our focus from observing program-level outcomes within specific focus areas to supporting the social impact of organizations as a whole.
This specific grant program is designed to bolster smaller and grassroots organizations in our community. If your organization’s budget is over $1 million, you are eligible for all of our other competitive grant programs.
We appreciate that budgets can vary from year to year. In this case, please submit the operational budgets from the past three years.
Yes. In this case, you are required to submit both the organization’s overall budget and the Pierce County specific budget. Organizations must request a grant amount that is proportionate to the Pierce County specific budget, not their overall organizational budget.
Eligibility will be based on the budget of the organization sponsored, not the budget of the larger organization serving as the fiscal sponsor. However, we will require both budgets as part of our due diligence review.
Yes, as long as your organization fits the eligibility criteria.
The strongest Strengthening Pierce County grant proposals paint a clear picture of how the applicant organization:
1. Has a clear desired impact and goals. For many organizations the application will be strongly tied to an existing strategic plan. For organizations that don’t have a strategic plan, the application should address the process that the organization is using to discern desired impact and goals.
2. Engages in organizational learning that informs its programs and practices. We are looking for evidence of how the organization gathers and uses insights and data from its key stakeholders–its own staff and board, volunteers, community partners, and the people that are impacted by its programs.
We believe it is important to bring community voices into our grantmaking decisions. We draw upon the experiences and expertise of community volunteers to review our competitive grant applications. The grant review committee reads applications, conducts speed interviews, and makes recommendations to our Board of Directors about which applications to fund and at what funding levels.
Speed interviews are an opportunity for the volunteer committee reviewing applications to gain more clarity about the specifics of the application. These 20-minute interviews are by invitation only and usually occur 4-6 weeks prior to funding.
We require a site visit (either conducted in-person or by phone) during the term of your grant and a final written report. We will send you more information before each deadline.
If you have other questions, please contact the Greater Tacoma Community Foundation at 253-383-5622.