Community Organizing Grants Program

Peace Development Fund

Suggest an update

Grant amount: US $2,500 - US $10,000

Anticipated deadline: Dec 28, 2019 5:00pm PST

Applicant type: Nonprofit

Funding uses: Education / Outreach, Applied Project / Program, General Operating Expense

Location of project: Haiti, Mexico, United States, American Samoa, Guam Expand all

Location of residency: Haiti, Mexico, United States, American Samoa, Guam Expand all

View website    Save Need help writing this grant?

About this funder:

View past grantees & full 990 summary


Grant-making Philosophy

The Peace Development Fund makes grants to community based organizations working for social justice. We believe that the change in values needed to establish a more just and peaceful world can come about only if it is strongly rooted in local communities that value the importance of building movements to create systemic social change. These are communities that view everyone, especially young people, as a vital force in the transformation of society. We recognize young people’s ability to reshape our society, not only politically, but also spiritually and culturally.

The Peace Development Fund is committed to supporting organizations and projects that recognize that peace will never be sustained unless it is based on justice and an appreciation of both the diversity and unity of the human family. We understand peace to be a consequence of equitable relationships—with our fellow human beings and with the natural environment of which we are a part and on which we depend.

What We Fund

Organizing to Shift Power

  • Groups that are creating a power base that can hold leaders accountable to the people who are affected by their decisions.
  • Groups that let their membership or constituents take the lead in collective action-planning and decision-making.
  • Groups whose leadership comes directly from the people who are most affected by the issues you are organizing around.

Working to Build a Movement

  • Groups that organize in the local community, but make connections between local issues and a broader need for systemic change.
  • Groups that provide a space for members to develop their political analyses at the same time as taking action for change.
  • Groups that break down barriers within the progressive movement, by building strategic alliances between groups of different cultural or class backgrounds or different issue areas.
  • Groups that explore the root causes of injustice and have a long-term vision for the kind of social change they are working for.

Dismantling Oppression

  • Groups and projects that are proactively engaged in a process of dismantling oppression, confronting privilege and challenging institutional structures that perpetuate oppression (both internal and external to the organization).
  • Groups that are proactively making connections between the different forms of oppression (racism, heterosexism, sexism, ageism, classism, ableism, etc.), and its connections with injustice.

Creating New Structures

  • Groups that have alternative organizational structures that allow power to flow “from the bottom up.”
  • Efforts to create new, community-based alternative systems and structures (economic, political, cultural, religious, etc.) that are liberating, democratic, and environmentally sustainable and which promote healthy, sustainable communities.

Other Funding Priorities

  • New or emerging organizations; efforts that have difficulty securing funds from other sources; community organizations working on climate change issues at the local policy level; groups that have a genesis in Occupy or Movement for Black Lives; or issues that are not yet recognized by progressive funders.

General Support vs. Project Support

The majority of grants awarded by PDF are for general support. We believe that the people on the ground know how best to spend the money. However, if an organization’s mission is not within PDF’s priorities but the organization has a program or project that is within the priorities, i.e. if the organization is a direct service organization, but has an organizing component, then we would recommend that groups apply for a specific program or project.

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


  • Any organization that fits PDF’s guidelines is eligible to apply for a grant.
  • Currently PDF only funds organizations in the United States, Haiti and Mexico through the Community Organizing Grants docket.
  • It is not necessary to have tax-exempt status to apply for a PDF grant.
    • However, all funds provided by the Peace Development Fund must be used only to support activities that further the exempt purposes and activities of PDF, and grant recipients must submit reports to PDF as required by the grant contract. 
  • Lobbying activities:
    • As a public foundation, PDF makes a limited number of grants for lobbying activities.
    • If you are applying for a lobbying grant, please indicate this in your grant proposal and specify whether you are seeking funds for grassroots or direct lobbying.


  • The Board will not approve funding for a project that has already been completed or is nearly over by the time the grant award is considered.
  • We cannot fund any effort that endorses a specific candidate for political office.
  • What We Do Not Fund:
    • Programs with a primary geographic focus outside of the United States, U.S. Territories, Mexico and Haiti. If an organization is U.S.-based but works mostly outside of these areas, it should consider filling out an LOI for a Donor Advised Fund grant, which are reviewed on a rolling basis.
    • Social services that are not linked to a clear organizing strategy. (PDF does fund organizations whose organizing work has a social service component.)
    • Individuals, or organizations with strong leadership from only one individual.
    • Conferences and other one-time events.
    • Audio-visual productions and distribution - TV, radio, publications, films, etc. (PDF does fund media work or audio-visual production as part of the general expenses of groups engaged in grassroots organizing).
    • Research that is not directly linked to an organizing strategy (PDF does fund research as part of the general expenses of groups engaged in grassroots organizing).
    • Academic institutions and scholarships.
    • Other grantmaking organizations (unless they are your fiscal sponsor).
    • Organizations with budgets larger than $250,000.