Urban Farming and Youth Leadership Grant

Merck Family Fund

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Next deadline: Jul 31, 2020 2:00pm PDT (Full proposal)

Later deadlines: Jan 10, 2021 2:00pm PST (Letter of inquiry), Jan 31, 2021 2:00pm PST (Full proposal), Jul 10, 2021 2:00pm PDT (Letter of inquiry)

Grant amount: US $2,000 - US $50,000

Fields of work: Food Access & Hunger Agriculture

Applicant type: Nonprofit, College / University

Funding uses: Education / Outreach, Project / Program

Location of project: Preferred: Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont, Counties in New York: Bronx County, Kings County, New York County, Queens County, Richmond County, Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania Other eligible locations: Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey Show all

Location of residency: United States

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About this funder:



The Merck Family Fund was established in 1954 by George W. Merck, President of Merck & Co., Inc.  He created the fund for two principal reasons: to do good with the resources acquired through the company’s success, and to create an opportunity to regularly bring family members together.


  • Restore and protect the natural environment and ensure a healthy planet for generations to come.

  • Strengthen the social fabric and the physical landscape of the urban community.

Program: Urban Farming and Youth Leadership

Growing food in community is a collective and personal entry point to many systemic issues including: health and nutrition, job training, environmental sustainability, and the creation of social capital. The local cultivation and distribution of fresh, healthy, and affordable food raises the awareness about quality and access something sorely lacking in low-income communities. 

Specifically, the Fund welcomes proposals that:

  • Provide high quality leadership development and employment for youth.

  • Support highly productive urban farming projects and increase local access to fresh food.

  • Engage residents in food access and food security issues in the community.

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


  • The Merck Family Fund contributes to tax-exempt organizations in the United States.
  • This new program at the Merck Family Fund will support programs in low-income urban areas in the Northeast that are harnessing the power of young people to create urban farms and local markets.


  • Priority will be given to projects that combine all aspects above and that reside in the six New England states, New York City, and Philadelphia.


  • It does not support individuals, for-profit organizations, or candidates for political office.

  • The Fund does not generally support:

    • governmental organizations

    • academic research or books

    • Endowments

    • debt reduction

    • annual fund-raising campaigns

    • capital construction

    • purchase of equipment

    • the acquisition of land

    • video projects