As a community foundation, we strive to be strategic and responsive to the changing needs of our Bay Area residents, workers, and communities. We support the Bay Area region through grants in Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Francisco, and San Mateo Counties.

The San Francisco Foundation has launched a bold equity agenda for greater racial and economic inclusion for struggling communities and people of color across the Bay Area. Across the region, we need to ensure that everyone that everyone has a chance at full employment at an affordable wage, a safe and affordable home, a strong political voice, and can live in a community that provides real access to opportunity.

Learn about the 2017 equity grants.

Grantmaking Opportunities

In addition to making strategic grants by invitation, The San Francisco Foundation has the following open grant opportunities:

Equity Grants Program: The Equity Grants Program was created to advance our agenda of greater racial and economic equity. We are offering one door to a suite of grant opportunities centered on our People, Place, and Power pathways. This grant cycle is now closed for 2017.

Rapid Response Fund for Movement Building: Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis.

FAITHS Community Partner Grants: The equity application will be open to proposals for a FAITHS Community Partner Grants throughout the month of September.

Basic Eligibility

Valid tax-exempt status
The San Francisco Foundation makes grants to most types of organizations that are in good standing with the IRS and are exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. We also make grants to government and public agencies, as well as to independent projects that have a qualified tax-exempt fiscal sponsor.

Regions Served
Projects must substantially benefit residents in at least one of the five Bay Area counties we serve: Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Francisco, and San Mateo. If your organization is based outside these five counties, the total number of local constituents benefiting from service must be competitive with local organizations.

2017 Equity Grants Program

Basic Criteria for Equity Grants Program

The Equity Grants Program is not accepting new applications at this time. The next cycle will begin in early 2018. The following describes the criteria and process observed for the 2017 Equity Grants Program.

  1. Alignment with Equity Agenda: Aligns with the foundation’s racial and economic equity agenda, goals, and strategies in the People, Place, and Power pathways.
  2. People Served: Serves and/or engages communities that are predominantly low-income people or communities of color in the foundation’s service area.
  3. Commitment to Diversity and Inclusion: Exhibits a commitment to achieving racial equity within the organization by employing people of color at all levels within the organization and showing a commitment to leadership development, as described in our Diversity Policy.
  4. Level of Impact: Given the depth and breadth of racial and economic challenges in the Bay Area, priority will be given to policy and systems change efforts that hold great promise for benefiting many diverse communities throughout the region, using various ways to reach a scale of impact. Efforts may include: policy advocacy, organizing, coalition building, and public/private partnerships.
  5. Strategic Learning and Evaluation: Has an established culture of learning with the capacity to track qualitative and quantitative impacts of efforts to achieve population impacts; and has the ability to measure results in terms of systemic change and policy wins at the local and/or regional level.

For more information on our grantmaking programs, contact