The Collins Foundation awards grants through three primary avenues, each of which has its own eligibiltiy criteria, application process, and timeline.
Responsive Grantmaking Program
Our oldest and largest program, Responsive Grantmaking is what most people will have in mind when thinking about applying to The Collins Foundation. We accept letters of inquiry six times each year and support a broad range of interest areas, including: arts and culture; child welfare and youth development; civic engagement; education; environmental justice and conservation; health equity; efforts to enhance community welfare; and services for LGBTQ, low-income, immigrant, and disability communities and communities of color. We primarily fund programs and projects, capacity building efforts, collaborations, capital projects, and challenge match campaigns. We also award unrestricted operating funds to culturally specific organizations; organizations undergoing significant transitions, program expansions, or responding to external challenges; organizations with small budgets; and those organizations primarily engaged in community organizing and advocacy. Full application criteria and timelines can be found on our responsive grantmaking page and applications are accepted through our online grantmaking portal.
Inititaive for Small & Emerging Organizations
The Foundation's 2015 Equity Plan prioritized the development of a special initiative as both a learning opportunity for the Foundation and an avenue to better serve all of Oregon's communities. After a year of research and conversations with funding partners and community leaders, we decided to launch an invitiation-only capacity building initiative modeled on the programs at MRG Foundation, Regional Arts & Culture Council, and Social Venture Partners. The Initiative launched in Fall 2018 and will initiatlly fund two cohorts of five organizations rooted in communities of color, providing general operating support and technical assistance funding for three years. More information about the Initiative can be found on our website.
Oregon Immigrant & Refugee Funders Collaborative
The year 2016 was marked by increasing hostility toward immigrants in general, and Mexican and Muslim immigrants in particular. When this was followed in 2017 by a series of deeply concerning federal actions on immigration, we knew we had to do our part to support and strengthen the network of organizations led by and serving immigrants and refugees in Oregon. To that end, we joined with our colleagues at Meyer Memorial Trust, The Oregon Community Foundation, MRG Foundation, and in 2018, Pride Foundation, to launch the Oregon Immigrant & Refugee Funders Collaborative (OIRFC). The OIRFC isn’t the only way we’re supporting and partnering with immigrant and refugee communities in Oregon—we continue to make investments in the ongoing work of immigrant-led and immigrant-serving organizations through our responsive grantmaking program. But we believe that the Collaborative can be an effective and nimble way to meet urgent needs in close coordination with our funding partner. Find out more about the OIRFC application process and criteria here.