Frequently Asked Questions

The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven does not make grants or loans to individuals. For students, there are a number of scholarships available; funding for scholarships is sent directly to the educational institution on the student’s behalf.

All grant seekers must meet a minimum level of criteria to be eligible for funding through The Community Foundation's competitive grant processes.

The Foundation offers multiple funding opportunities that require an application process throughout the year. Criteria and deadlines vary. Please view our Grants You Can Apply For page to review these funding opportunities. Distributions from permanent unrestricted and preference funds, Community Foundation initiatives and some donor advised funds make grants under this category possible.
Scholarships administered by The Community Foundation are determined by committee.

Resources from designated and most donor advised funds are distributed directly to organizations specified by the donor and are not open to an application process.

Applications are available online on the Grants You Can Apply For

page. As each grant process is unique, details about how, when and where to submit an application are posted on that page and are included in the application packet. All grant processes must be submitted online.

Deadlines vary for submission of grant applications. Potential applicants are encouraged to visit the Grants You Can Apply For page frequently for a schedule of deadlines.

Not directly. Grants from donor advised funds are made to nonprofit organizations based on the donor’s wishes and areas of interest.

We do not provide direct assistance with writing proposals. However, we can suggest that you contact the Connecticut Council of Philanthropy, the Connecticut Association of Nonprofits, the New Haven Free Public Library and the Foundation Center, all of which frequently conduct or sponsor workshops on proposal writing, among other services. You may also find relevant information in our Nonprofit Management Resource Center

While there is no guarantee that The Community Foundation will fund a specific grant request, it is committed to funding organizations that present opportunities for partnerships and that demonstrate an ability to leverage resources. The Foundation looks for leadership, strong evaluation and clearly articulated goals and measures when reviewing projects for which funding is requested.

Community reviewers and Foundation staff review all incoming grant inquiries for the Responsive Grants cycle. Smaller committees typically review grant inquiries for funding requested from specific funds. The Foundation's Board of Directors votes to approve funding for grant requests.

Generally, no. Your grant inquiry will serve as an introduction and summary of your project. Upon review, staff may either invite your application or contact you if a meeting or more information is necessary.

There is a wide range in the dollar amounts of grants awarded. You should determine the amount of funding you need for your project and submit an application for that amount.

The Community Foundation believes in investing in strengthening the infrastructure of nonprofit organizations by supporting general operating costs, which include administrative and shared expenses. Administrative and shared expenses are supported by competitive grants, and the funding level of this support is considered on a case by case basis depending on the request. Administrative and shared expenses are typically at least 10% of the overall request.

Basic Criteria for Applying for Funding

You must be a tax-exempt organization

You must be defined as a tax-exempt organization under Section 501(c)(3) or any applicable statute of the Internal Revenue code. While grants are occasionally made to governmental agencies, local nonprofits receive priority. Requests will be considered from groups that do not have tax-exemption status, provided that they have a fiscal agent with the appropriate tax status. In projects involving a partnership of agencies, a single agency with the appropriate tax status and financial management capacity must assume the role of lead organization. Individuals are not eligible for grants but can be eligible for academic scholarships.

Residents of New Haven, West Haven, East Haven or Hamden are eligible to receive a grant from the New Haven Neighborhood Leadership.

You must provide services within our 20 town area:

  • Ansonia
  • Bethany
  • Branford
  • Cheshire
  • Derby
  • East Haven
  • North Branford
  • North Haven
  • West Haven
  • Oxford
  • New Haven
  • Guilford
  • Hamden
  • Madison
  • Milford
  • Seymour
  • Shelton
  • Wallingford
  • Orange
  • Woodbridge

You must adhere to a policy of non-discrimination [Doc, 702KB] on the basis of:

  • age
  • sex
  • religion
  • national origin
  • sexual preference
  • in all aspects of organizational operations including hiring, leadership and service provision.

Projects that do not generally receive consideration

  • religious activities
  • endowment campaigns
  • lobbying
  • travel
  • previously incurred debts
  • funding deficits

Grants available for capital campaigns are limited

Requests for capital projects (building, equipment, vehicles, and other depreciable items) will be evaluated as to their ability to enable the organization to more significantly serve its constituency. Typically, The Foundation awards only one large capital grant per year.

Most grants are made for one to three years. The Foundation doesn't provide permanent funding for projects. Most grants are made with continuing support contingent upon availability of support and progress towards stated outcomes. There are times, however, when requests for longer-term funding are considered and supported, in accordance with The Community Foundation's strategic goal to put community assets on solid ground.


Christina M. Ciociola

Senior Vice President for Grantmaking and Strategy


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Denise Canning

Director of Grant Operations


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