Small Grants - Environment & Animal Welfare / Community Development / Arts, Culture, & Historic Preservation

Community Foundation for Monterey County

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Grant amount: US $5,000 - US $12,000

Deadline: Sep 4, 2020

Applicant type: Nonprofit

Funding uses: Education / Outreach, Project / Program, General Operating Expense, Training / Capacity Building, Capital Project

Location of project: Monterey County, California

Location of residency: United States

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About this funder:



The Community Foundation for Monterey County’s strategic plan embraces a countywide vision of Healthy, Safe and Vibrant Communities. Community Impact Grants address critical issues and opportunities in five program areas that advance this vision.

Small Grants

While still following the Community Impact guidelines and priorities, these smaller grants are intended for emerging projects, first-time Community Impact applicants, small organizations or programs serving a specific population or geographic area. The Small Grants program has a streamlined application and reporting process. Grant requests are reviewed and recommended by CFMC program staff assigned to each program area.

Community Development

We support community-building activities that engage individuals and communities to lead efforts that create opportunities for local problem solving. We support strategies to enhance community environments so that all residents have safe, welcoming and accessible places and spaces to live, work and play; and we invest in activities that increase opportunities for the economic security and advancement of young adults and low-income residents.

Funding Priorities:

  • Community organizing and leadership development that engages people in addressing issues of mutual concern and leading positive change in their community (e.g., organize residents to address neighborhood concerns, training for emerging leaders)
  • Community revitalization to make public spaces accessible, family-friendly and safe (e.g., community gardens, development of bike/walking trails, community emergency preparedness, collaboration and joint use agreements with schools and other public buildings/spaces, etc.)
  • Immigrant and basic adult literacy services to help people access information they need to fully participate in their communities, workplace and 21st-century commerce (e.g., citizenship classes, language acquisition, family financial management, digital literacy, etc.)
  • Employment readiness, skills training and other employment resources that increase access to living-wage jobs (e.g., summer jobs for youth, career counseling, job search and interviewing skills)

Arts & Culture

We foster activities and programs that broaden, diversify and deepen participation in quality artistic experiences, especially among youth, multicultural and other new audiences.

Funding Priorities:

  • Access to art education and cultural experiences that nurture development for youth (e.g., art appreciation programs, youth mentorship, artistic training and performance opportunities
  • Efforts to reach new and underserved audiences with relevant, high-quality, artistic experiences (e.g., targeted marketing and outreach efforts, strategic initiatives for audience development, programming to attract new audiences, development of bilingual and bicultural programs)
  • Community-building programs that use the arts to promote cultural expression, build community pride and bridge cultural divides (e.g., community art projects, multicultural programming)

Historic Preservation

We fund activities that preserve and celebrate Monterey County’s rich and diverse history.

Funding Priorities:

  • Efforts to preserve, restore and interpret historic places, structures and artifacts that are significant to Monterey County’s history (e.g., interpretation plans, structural assessments, archival enhancements)
  • Educational programs that cultivate interest, understanding and pride in the history and cultures of our region (e.g., historic curriculum enhancements, school field trip destinations)

Note: Most of the Community Foundation’s historical preservation funding is made possible via the Thomas Doud, Sr. and Anita M. Doud Fund, which was designated “…to preserve, protect, and interpret the history, art, architecture and culture of the City of Monterey.” Please refer to our Historic Preservation Grant Guidelines for eligibility guidelines.

Environment & Animal Welfare

We support programs that educate and involve local residents in protecting and preserving our natural resources and sustaining healthy ecosystems; and we invest in animal welfare programs that promote the responsible and humane treatment of companion animals.

Funding Priorities: 

  • Environmental education and hands-on experiences for youth that inspire responsible stewardship of our natural resources (e.g., food systems, watershed, energy use, biodiversity and inter-dependence, climate change, etc.);
  • Activities that help sustain healthy ecosystems and other efforts to ensure a healthy Monterey County for current and future generations (e.g., habitat restoration, efficient energy use, recycling, park/beach clean-ups, etc.); 
  • Prevention programs that address pet overpopulation, abuse, neglect and homelessness;
  • Programs that support vulnerable people (e.g., seniors, disabled) in keeping their companion animals at home.

Types of Support

Program - The CFMC considers all expense needs associated with implementing services to produce meaningful results and in carrying out a nonprofit’s mission. Applications requesting program support estimate how grant funds would be used in a program budget. Funding is provided for ongoing and expanded programs that show the promise of efficacy and sustainability. Strong applications include Evaluation Plans with a few measurable goals which will demonstrate progress towards the program’s broader outcomes

Operating Support - The CFMC provides unrestricted operating grants to organizations that have a proven grants record of community benefit in Monterey County. Organizations must be based in Monterey County and have a positive and stable history with CFMC. Approximately 30% of the Community Impact annual grantmaking is budgeted for operating grants.

Organizational Development - Proposals are welcome for major organizational development efforts (non-recurring activities intended to develop the internal capacity and infrastructure of organizations). Organizations proposing a capacitybuilding grant should address how the project strengthens the organization and how it will enhance its mission and benefit the community served.

Capital Support - The CFMC supports capital costs (buildings and facilities) when those capital improvements have the potential to advance greater social benefit. Capital support will be considered for predevelopment expenses and/or construction costs. Preference will be given to requests that have raised at least half of the total project costs.

You can learn more about this opportunity by visiting the funder's website.


  • Community Impact grants are open to 501(c)3 nonprofit organizations and public agencies serving Monterey County residents.
  • All requested funding must directly benefit residents of Monterey County.
  • All organizations applying for a grant must be current on reporting obligations for past CFMC grants.


  • Grant funds cannot be used for the following types of activities:
    • Activities that are non-secular or promote a religious doctrine; 
    • Academic research;
    • Funding to K-12 schools and public agencies that would supplant tax-supported, mandated services or for the acquisition or renovation of equipment and facilities;
    • Fundraising campaigns or fundraising events;
    • Creation of, or addition to, an endowment fund;
    • Payment of debt or legal settlements;
    • Political or partisan purposes; or
    • Expenses incurred prior to the grant award date.
  • The CFMC does not support organizations that discriminate in their employment practices, volunteer opportunities, or delivery of programs and services on the basis of race, religion, gender, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, marital status, sexual orientation, or any other characteristics protected by law.