Bainbridge Community Foundation



The Foundation administers an annual competitive community grant cycle, a capacity building grant cycle, and three area-of-interest funds. We welcome proposals to our grant cycles from 501(c)(3) organizations located in Washington State that serve Bainbridge Island residents.

As a community foundation, our mission is to be generalists and help sustain all sectors of the nonprofit community. Grants are made in the following general areas:

Animal Welfare, Arts and Culture, Disaster Relief, Education, Environment, Health and Human Services, Housing, Public and Society Benefit, Recreation, Science and Technology, and Social Science and Public Policy.

The guidelines for each type of grant are described below:

Annual Community Grants Cycle (CGC)

Since the inception of the CGC in 2005, more than $1.5 million in grant dollars have been awarded through this program. In July 2016, BCF granted a record-breaking $243,661 to fifty-three nonprofits serving Bainbridge Islanders. Thirty-four proposals were fully funded, the highest amount in the Foundation’s history. This success is due in large part to the countless volunteer hours given by our evaluation team and our record number of funding partners.

To see a complete listing of  2016 CGC grant awards and recipients please click here. To read our press release on the 2016 CGC, please click here.

The CGC funds proposals from 501(c)(3) nonprofits located in Washington State that serve Bainbridge Islanders. Applications that directly benefit the community, benefit the greatest number of people or under-served populations, and have measurable outcomes are encouraged. In addition to BCF discretionary grantmaking funds, we partner with BCF Donor Advisors, Private Foundations, other partners, as well as granting the BCF Collaboration Prize (formally known as the Trustees’ Award).  This prize is focused on funding applications that promotes a true collaboration between organizations.  This award is funded by donations from board, staff, and CGC evaluation team members.

New this year, BCF will be piloting an online grant catalogue of Community Grant Cycle requests with the goal of leveraging community donor support. In the past we’ve shared requests with our donor advisors and funding partners.  Our hope is that this new component will bring greater awareness to your project. There will be the option to opt-out of this program if your organizaton does not wish to participate.

Funds may be requested for:

  • Programs: Projects that are not part of the organization’s general operations
  • Capital: Facility repairs or improvements
  • Direct: Support or access to programming for under-served population(s)
  • Operating: Support for an organization’s general operating budget

2017 Community Grant Cycle Timeline

  • February 15 – Grant Cycle Opens
  • March 15 –Grant Cycle Closes — DEADLINE 9 PM PST to submit online Grant Application via Common Grant Application.
  • March 16 – June 16 – Application evaluation and review.  Site visits scheduled between March 31 and April 21.
  • June 20 – BCF Board of Trustees makes final grant decisions
  • June 21 – Organizations notified of funding decisions
  • July 13 – Annual Nonprofit Celebration, 4:30 – 6:00 PM at Bainbridge Performing Arts (with One Call for All & BI Rotary)
  • Mid July — Grant Agreement information emailed via Common Grant Application to the email provided in the application.  Grantee will log on and accept the agreement. Grant checks will then be mailed.
  • August 31, 2017 – Due date to submit FINAL REPORT via Online Grant Application for the 2016 CGC grants cycle
  • August 31, 2018 – Due date to submit FINAL REPORT via Online Grant Application for the 2017 CGC grants cycle

Annual Capacity Building Grant Cycle (October of each year)

BCF recognizes that one goal most organizations share is to perform their work more efficiently and effectively. This capacity building grant cycle is part of a program to assess if focused grant making can help achieve that goal. Improvements in the areas of administration, governance, planning, and fundraising are most desired. Therefore,
this grant cycle will be focused on building an organization’s internal capacity in these areas in order to strengthen and support our local nonprofit sector.

Capacity building is distinguishable from direct program services, general operating support or capital expenses in that they typically seek to increase the knowledge, skill level and/or efficiency of a nonprofit board and/or staff.  Capacity building services are typically provided by an individual outside of the organization that has the expertise and the ability to focus on one aspect of an organization’s management.  These include but are not limited to:

  • Board / Staff training
  • Strategic planning
  • Analysis of programs, technology and fundraising
  • Program evaluation

Community Response Fund (CRF)

The Community Response Fund is an area-of-interest fund established in 2009. The purpose of this fund is to assist local non-profit human service agencies that experience an unexpected temporary funding need that impacts their ability to provide critical community services. As such, it provides a safety net for the agencies that provide a safety net for our community.

Housing Action Fund (HAF)

The Housing Action Fund is an area-of-interest fund established in 2009. This fund makes “seed money” available to nonprofit organizations, enabling them to take advantage of affordable housing opportunities.