Frequently Asked Questions
Does DEW Foundation fund operating expenses?
Absolutely. DEW is, in most cases, interested in supporting your vision and mission more than imposing our opinion on how you meet these goals. We still require information about organization projects to help us with our grant making decisions.
What are your letter of inquiry (LOI) and grant application deadlines?
Please note—LOI and Grant Application portal does not open until April 1.
(The portal will be closed after each deadline and will not re-open again for LOI’s and applications until April 1 the following year.)
First Time Applicant LOI Deadline: August 1
Returning Applicant LOI Deadline: (NOT funded in previous 12 months): August 1
Returning Applicant LOI Deadline: (Last 5 years previous funding): August 1
Currently Funded Grantee Applicant Deadline: (Last 12 months previous funding): September 15
Visit the “HOW TO APPLY” page to determine which form you need to submit.
Does DEW Foundation offer matching grants?
DEW on occasion has, as part of an NPO fund-raising project, made grants that, up to a maximum grant amount, match contributions made by other contributors. The twofold objective of matching grant offers is to incentivize and assist an NPO to broaden its support base and to incentivize potential contributors to become involved and make contributions they may not otherwise make.
DEW does not generally respond to matching grant offers initiated by other individuals or organizations. Our view is that matching grants are made to incentivize and assist NPO’s to broaden their support base and to incentivize potential contributors to make contributions they may not otherwise make. DEW, on the other hand, is not incentivized by matching grant offers.
Does DEW Foundation offer multi-year grants?
Yes, depending upon the scope and duration of the project. In some cases, approved grants are required to submit a progress report before subsequent funding is released. However, returning applicants who have received funding for five or more consecutive years are required to submit a new LOI. Visit the “HOW TO APPLY” page to determine which form you need to submit.
Is there a maximum grant size?
DEW Foundation, as a rule, does not grant above 10% of your operating budget.
What is an appropriate request amount?
The amount that you request should be proportionate to your organizational budget, project budgets, and expected income from other sources. While we have no restrictions regarding the maximum size grant you may request, the board will take into consideration your track record in implementing projects of a similar size and scope.
What types of organizations do you NOT grant to?
Please refer to our Grant Guidelines page.
We do not have a 501(c)(3) classification. Can we apply to DEW Foundation through a fiscal sponsor?
Yes, the Foundation will accept proposals from fiscal sponsors. If the LOI is accepted, staff will contact the fiscal sponsor to discuss requirements for submitting a proposal.
We are a tax-exempt organization, but are not classified as a 501(c)(3) Public Charity. Can we still apply to DEW Foundation?
Organizations that qualify as tax-exempt within the meaning of Internal Revenue Code Sections 170(c) or 170(c)(2)(B) are eligible to apply to the Foundation. Examples of these organizations/entities are school districts, libraries, and tribes. You must provide a valid EIN when submitting your letter of inquiry (LOI).
Do you fund grass roots organizations?
Our Guidelines state that DEW does not contribute to political parties or associated political organizations. Grass roots organizations supporting nonpartisan issues may be considered.
Do you fund capital projects?
Yes, we fund major construction, expansion or new facility programs. Funding is limited to projects that directly benefit the organization’s constituents and communities, demonstrate a high demand for the applicant’s programs and services, and demonstrate a sustainable business plan.
What is your grant review process?
LOIs and grant requests are reviewed by Foundation staff and then by the Foundation’s board to determine which projects best meet the Foundation’s funding priorities and criteria. If a proposal is favorably reviewed, the Foundation may partially or completely fund the request. Funding is ultimately contingent upon the alignment with the Foundation’s priorities and availability of funds within the Foundation’s annual budget.
How many copies of the Letter of Inquiry (LOI) or Grant Requests should we send?
LOIs and grant applications must be completed online and submitted. Neither LOI submissions nor grant applications are accepted by mail.
When are applicants notified of funding decisions?
After the LOI is reviewed you will be contacted with instructions to complete an application or receive notice of a denial. Grant applicants will be notified of the final decision after the Foundation’s fall meeting.
Can we submit more than one letter of inquiry at a time?
No. Organizations may only submit one letter of inquiry (LOI) at a time. Grant writers representing several non-profits may submit one LOI per organization.
We have previously been issued a grant by DEW Foundation. Do we still submit a letter of inquiry (LOI) when reapplying?
An LOI is required under certain circumstances regardless of previous funding. Please see the How To Apply section of our Website to see if your organization needs to submit an LOI.
Does DEW Foundation require a letter of inquiry (LOI) be submitted before a formal proposal?
Yes, an LOI must be submitted first. Foundation staff may then request a proposal after reviewing an organization’s LOI.
All new applicants and returning applicants who have been funded for five or more consecutive years must submit an LOI first. If the LOI is approved, you will receive further instructions to complete a grant application. Visit the “HOW TO APPLY” page to determine which form you need to submit.
What is the process for applying for a grant?
The first step in the application process is to submit a letter of inquiry (LOI) via the Foundation’s Website. Foundation staff will respond indicating whether or not a full proposal is invited. Please see the How To Apply section of our Website to read more about our grantmaking process.
Does DEW Foundation accept unsolicited requests?
Yes, however DEW Foundation grants almost exclusively to organizations that our Board Members are personally involved with in some way.
I have received five or more years of consecutive funding from DEW Foundation. Do I need to do anything different?
Yes, you will need to complete the LOI process before the August 1st deadline, and be approved to apply for funding. Visit the “HOW TO APPLY” page to determine which form you need to submit.