Description, Funding, and Eligibility

“We believe the strength of our community stems from its diversity and only together can we address issues and create opportunities so every person can achieve their full potential. For several years, we have invested in communities of great need to address systemic issues based in poverty that affect health, education, and access to an equitable community. Though we have made considerable progress, our work is far from over – it is beginning anew.”
         - Nelle Miller, Board Member, and Roxie Jerde, President & CEO

Equity and Access Grants ($5,000 - $30,000) support projects that promote equity and access to services amongst populations who face systemic barriers in our community. These grants are an opportunity for the Community Foundation to partner with organizations who are focusing on Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Access in local, direct service work.  

Funding Priorities

Funding priorities are designed to create alignment with our available funding streams but they are not exclusionary.  

Priority is given to health and human services projects as well as those that promote equity to populations who face systemic barriers in our community, for example: 

  • Geographically underserved neighborhoods
  • Communities of color
  • Immigrants, refugees, or English language learners
  • Persons with disabilities
  • LGBTQ+ communities
  • Single mothers
  • And other under-represented populations

In past years, we have offered a health care grant opportunity that focused on access to health care services for underserved populations. This year, those funds will be granted out through the Equity and Access Grant cycles.  

Organizations may receive up to $30,000 through the Equity and Access Grant program within a 365 day period.

In order to receive a grant through this program, organizations must also have:

  • An IRS Letter of Determination that shows the organization is a 501(c)3 public charity. 
  • At least one current program with local impact in one of the following counties: Sarasota, Manatee, Charlotte, or DeSoto.
  • An approved/current profile in The Giving Partner, a powerful, searchable online database with over 700 profiles of charitable organizations serving Sarasota, Manatee, Charlotte, and DeSoto counties.


Apply and Review Process

Review Process

This grant opportunity is available in two cycles:  

  • Cycle 1: Application opens July 20, 2021 and closes September 3, 2021. Organizations will be notified of their application status by October 15, 2021. This application has been closed.
  • Cycle 2: Application opens December 7, 2021 and closes January 28, 2022. Organizations will be notified of their application status by March 4, 2022. 
Grant Reporting

Grant Reporting

As a grantee of the Community Foundation, we have grant reporting expectations and requirements to showcase the results of the great work you are accomplishing with this funding.

Share Your Story of Impact

Received an Equity and Access Grant? Share how this funding contributed to your organization's work and success within our community. 

What can be a Story of Impact?
  • Press Release
  • Blogs
  • Videos
  • Testimonials
  • Articles
  • Podcasts / Audio Recordings

Please reference our Press Kit to help draft your message and coordinate review with Hunter Carpenter, Manager of Communications and Marketing, at 

Looking for examples? Check out the Stories of Impact below from a variety of grantees.

Resources for Grantees

Eligibility Requirements

Press Kit for Grantees

Additional Questions?

If you have questions about the Equity and Access grant cycles that were not answered on this page, please view one of our past information sessions or bring them to an upcoming information session with our team. Videos and registration for upcoming information sessions below.

View Past Information Sessions

Need Assistance?

Angelica Hull

Grants, Manager