What we Support

Since its inception, Monterey Peninsula Foundation has given millions of dollars to local organizations. In the 2015-16 fiscal year, the Foundation donated $10.8 million to support nonprofits and schools in the tri-county area we serve.

Geographic Area

Organizations located in, or that have services or programs directly impacting residents in Monterey, Santa Cruz, or San Benito Counties are eligible to apply.

Organizations located, or that have headquarters, outside of our tri-county region must demonstrate ongoing commitment to the local community.

Focus Areas

Monterey Peninsula Foundation awards grants to nonprofit organizations that benefit the community in the focus areas of arts & culture, community & environment, education, health & human services, and youth.

Monterey Peninsula Foundation places a higher priority on applications that offer creative responses to the community’s most pressing, unmet needs and show promise of building ongoing local support for needed services.

Organizations seeking funding should have a broad base of funding support, management capacity to effectively execute the project, a clear plan for project evaluation, outcome measurement, and collaboration among other service providers. Organizations seeking funding for a specific program should showcase a significant funding gap or critical opportunity, a long-term impact, preventive intervention and education, and produce measurable results.

Arts & Culture

Grants in the Arts & Culture focus area foster the creative environment and inspire curiosity, imagination, and appreciation of the arts.

Community & Environment

In the Community & Environment focus area, grants leverage collaboration and partnership for increased impact. We look for opportunities to increase equity and to build healthy, thriving communities appropriate to the needs of the counties we serve. We seek to protect, conserve, and nurture our environmental, natural, and agricultural resources.

Education

In the Education focus area, grants build skills and knowledge for students that carry the capacity to change lives. We support efforts to ensure equitable access to quality education for all, from early childhood to career and beyond.

Health & Human Services

Grants in the Health & Human Services focus area seek to improve health and wellness for body, mind, and spirit. We look for opportunities that ensure individuals, families, and children have what they need to be safe, healthy, and to thrive.

Youth

In the Youth focus area, we look to support organizations that help young people grow into their individual potentials, building resiliency along the way.

Types of Support

Operating Support

Across our focus areas, we offer trusted partners the opportunity to receive operating support, providing the greatest degree of flexibility for delivering quality services and programs. Unrestricted funds are an important tool in community funding strategies aimed at building a resilient sector and consistent service. We see operating support as a key way to strengthen the web of organizations supporting the spectrum of needs in communities we serve.

Program Support

Program support provides specific funding to achieve a small set of goals. For this restricted support, we require a specific budget that outlines the program or project. Reports provided give Monterey Peninsula Foundation the ability to compare projected costs with actual expenditures. Strategically, program support ensures that communities have access to important services and experiences that enrich lives.

Capital Support

We support a wide range of capital efforts each year. We look for opportunities to contribute toward important community resources in each of our focus areas, supporting infrastructure for whole communities. Grant applications should show strong and realistic financial planning that includes a variety of income streams. The Foundation may make matching or challenge grants to help organizations attract wider support.

We understand that multiple phases are sometimes necessary to accomplish a big vision, and we’ll work to right-size our support in light of context and need.

Grant Size

Monterey Peninsula Foundation receives approximately 225 grant applications a year for local support, and the Grant Committee awards about 175 grants annually that range widely from $1,000 to $500,000. The amount requested from the Monterey Peninsula Foundation should be proportional to the budget, and should include income from other sources. While there are no restrictions for the maximum grant amount applicants may request (other than for public K-12 schools), Monterey Peninsula Foundation will take into consideration the applicant’s track record in implementing projects of a similar size and scope.

Monterey Peninsula Foundation receives approximately 225 grant applications a year for local support, and the Grant Committee awards about 175 grants annually that range widely from $1,000 to $500,000. The amount requested from the Monterey Peninsula Foundation should be proportional to the budget, and should include income from other sources. While there are no restrictions for the maximum grant amount applicants may request (other than for public K-12 schools), Monterey Peninsula Foundation will take into consideration the applicant’s track record in implementing projects of a similar size and scope.

Need Assistance?

Application Process

For questions about the Online Portal or the application process, contact:

Breanna Warnars,
Program Associate at
bw@mpfca.org or 831.649.1533.

Eligibility

For guidance on whether a request would be eligible for support, contact:

Hana Kong,
Program Officer at
hk@mpfca.org or 831.649.1533.

Community Initiatives

For questions regarding giving strategies or community initiatives, contact:

Mary Gunn,
Director of Philanthropy at
mg@mpfca.org or 831.649.1533.

For resources on grant writing and other trainings, visit the Community Foundation for Monterey County’s Center for Nonprofit Excellence.