Building Equitable Communities Grants

At the Foundation, we are committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion and these values inform our mission, strategic priorities, and work. From creating a more generous region, to fostering a thriving cultural community, to expanding equitable access to higher education, to creating a healthy, accessible food system for all, our Strategic Initiatives promote pivotal change in the four counties we serve: El Dorado, Sacramento, Placer, and Yolo. 

In 2020, we launched the Building Equitable Communities Fund to support a vision of a community where all of our neighbors have access to the resources they need to thrive. We believe investment in our region’s diverse communities will result in greater impact and shared opportunities for all across the greater capital area. 

The pandemic has disrupted lives, businesses, and communities all across the region and left many nonprofits strained to meet people's needs. Through our Building Equitable Communities grants, the Foundation aims to build community capacity and support eligible nonprofit organizations that are strengthening our region, responding to emerging opportunities that address the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, supporting creative new approaches and partnerships that will benefit our communities beyond recovery, and adapting to better serve the long-term resilience of the greater Sacramento region. 

We seek to fund organizations across a variety of focus areas including, but not limited to, arts and culture, education, environment, animal services, health and wellness, and basic needs. These grants are made possible by generous donors who have contributed unrestricted and broadly defined gifts, which allow us to respond to the community’s changing opportunities and challenges over time. 

Grant awards will vary in size from $2,500-$10,000. There will be one Building Equitable Communities Grant cycle in 2021.

This grant opportunity is closed.

Please note that the requirements articulated below were developed for a previous round of the grant opportunity. Details for future rounds may differ.

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To be eligible for consideration, organizations must:

  • Be located and serve in El Dorado, Placer, Sacramento, and/or Yolo counties.
  • Be considered a 501(c)(3) public charity, 501(c)(3) private operating foundation or be fiscally-sponsored by an organization that meets this requirement.
  • Have a current profile on the region’s nonprofit database, GivingEdge, or agree to submit a profile as a grantee prior to the final report deadline. (Applicants may still apply for funding without a profile.)

We are seeking to ensure that funds are invested as equitably as possible by identifying the needs of underserved populations, communities, and geographic areas. Proposals will also be reviewed based on the following criteria:

  • Impact:
    • Fills gaps between the public sector response and unmet community needs due to the pandemic
    • Strengthens our region’s long-term efforts to rebuild
    • Responds to emerging opportunities that address the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic
    • Supports creative new approaches and partnerships that will help build the long-term resilience of the greater Sacramento region
  • Accountability:
    • Demonstrates capable leadership and knowledge of, and involvement in, the communities served
    • Meaningfully engages the voices, perspectives, and expertise of their program participants
  • Community Partnerships: Carries out work in coordination with local community partners.
  • Capacity: Demonstrates reasonable capacity and financial health and exhibits the potential to accomplish results/impact.

Grants may not be used for:

  • Capital campaigns
  • Gifts to endowments
  • Fundraising events
  • Political advocacy
  • Legislative policy efforts
  • Schools, school districts, PTOs, preschools, childcare centers, camps, and sports teams/clubs
  • Promotion of particular religious and/or spiritual beliefs
  • Additionally, grants will not be given to organizations that discriminate on the basis of age, race, gender, national origin, ethnicity, language, veteran status, sexual orientation, or disability
Activity Date
Grant Launch October 1, 2021
Grant Deadline October 25, 2021
Award Notifications Week of November 15, 2021

Proposals will only be accepted through our online application. No email or paper applications will be accepted. 

To apply, applicants must create or profile in the Foundation's grants portal via the link below. Please make sure your organization’s legal name associated with your tax ID number and mailing address are current in your grant organization profile. If you are a fiscally sponsored organization, please make sure your fiscal sponsor name and tax ID number is current in your grant organization profile. 


For questions about the Building Equitable Communities Grant program or for technical assistance, contact