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Social Justice and Interfaith Understanding

Grants & LoansGrantsCommunity Grants › Social Justice and Interfaith Understanding

Working with MCF

We encourage potential applicants--both current and prospective grantees--to read about MCF's overall approach to grantmaking, our grantee relations commitments, and updates on working with MCF.

Overview

The goal of this Community Grant area is to promote social justice and interfaith understanding in Marin County.

Marin County is home to a rich and diverse range of institutions and individuals that have a deep commitment to improving the quality of life for all of Marin’s residents. This includes a strong focus on ensuring greater social justice and stronger understanding among different faith traditions throughout our community.

When a community—supported by religious, faith-based and community-based organizations, as well as concerned and engaged individuals—engages in activities to promote social justice and interfaith understanding, sustainable change can occur. To this end, MCF is committed to supporting efforts that increase awareness, mobilize communities, and catalyze social change to systemically address social inequities in Marin County. In addition, MCF recognizes and supports the powerful link between interfaith dialogue and understanding and creating positive social change.

Note: For this program area, we are defining social justice as promoting or aspiring to equal access to social, political, and economic opportunities and resources. Interfaith understanding refers to communication between and among faith communities that crosses religious lines with an aim to explore common ground in beliefs and values.

A logic model has been developed that further explains the approaches, activities, and desired impact of this goal area.

Strategy 1: Increase community engagement to identify and address social justice issues


To be eligible for funding under this strategy, religious, faith-based, or nonprofit organizations must:

  • have a nonprofit tax-exempt status or a fiscal sponsor with a nonprofit tax exempt status
  • aim to improve the quality of life of Marin County residents, especially individuals from marginalized communities (i.e., communities that have been underrepresented, denied a voice in decisions that affect their communities, and/or experienced discrimination)
  • engage individuals from marginalized communities in the identification and eradication of social inequities
  • have a history of identifying and framing social justice issues, providing visibility of a social justice issue, and/or engaging in community organizing, movement building, advocacy, or civic engagement activities
  • propose strategies to develop leadership skills of grassroots members and opportunities for members to participate in meaningful leadership opportunities
  • be a reputable organization known for successfully educating the general public and key decision makers about particular social justice issues that impact marginalized communities in Marin County

Priority consideration will be given to currently funded projects that show promise for success and projects working to advance the goals of the Foundation’s Strategic Initiatives and Community Grants. Projects that are in the early stages of building a movement are also of interest. Projects that intend to leverage MCF funds with other funding sources and partnerships will also be given special consideration.

Grant term, amount, and requirements:

The twelve-month grant term will be March 1, 2014 to February 28, 2015.

Approximately $200,000 in funding will be available for this area. Grant awards will range between $10,000 - $50,000.

Final reports will be required through the Foundation’s online Grant Center.

Use of funds:

Funding in this area is limited to project support restricted to a specific piece of work over a period of time to achieve measurable results. Project support grants may be used to pay for all costs directly related to the operation of the project. Project support grants cannot be used for general administration of the organization.

Requested funds may be used to:

  • support staff positions that identify, plan, implement, and/or evaluate the project
  • cover operational costs associated with the project
  • cover technical assistance costs associated with improving the organization’s capacity to successfully carry out the project

Grant funds cannot be used for the provision of direct social or health services, for religious purposes, or for emergency or capital expenditures, including computer hardware, software, or related items.

Strategy 2: Increase collaboration and dialogue among religious institutions, faith-based communities, and community members


To be eligible for funding under this strategy, religious, faith-based, or nonprofit organizations must:

  • have a nonprofit tax-exempt status or a fiscal sponsor with a nonprofit tax exempt status
  • propose a clear action plan and evaluation plan to deepen interfaith understanding
  • propose programs whose primary participants are Marin County residents

Priority consideration will be given to projects that link efforts to deepen interfaith understanding to activities that address specific social justice issues as well as projects that propose innovative strategies to include individuals from marginalized communities in interfaith understanding activities. Projects that intend to leverage MCF funds with other funding sources and partnerships will also be given special consideration.

Grant term, amount, and requirements:

The twelve-month grant term will be March 1, 2014 to February 28, 2015.

Approximately $60,000 in funding will be available for this area. Grant awards will range between $5,000 - $20,000.

Final reports will be required through the Foundation’s online Grant Center.

Use of funds:

Funding in this area is limited to project support restricted to a specific piece of work over a period of time to achieve measurable results. Project support grants may be used to pay for all costs directly related to the operation of the project. Project support grants cannot be used for general administration of the organization.

Requested funds may be used to:

  • support staff positions that plan, implement, and evaluate activities aimed at deepening interfaith understanding in Marin County
  • cover operational costs associated with interfaith understanding events and activities

Grant funds cannot be used for the provision of direct social or health services, for proselytizing, or for emergency or capital expenditures, including computer hardware, software, or related items.

Eligibility for Strategy 1 and 2:

Grants are limited to qualified non-profit organizations directly serving residents of Marin County.

The following entities are not eligible for funding under both strategies:

  • Individuals
  • Coalitions that do not have a lead organization
  • Endowments or private foundations
  • Religious organizations, where the grant is to be used for proselytizing purposes
  • Federal, state, or municipal agencies
  • Political campaigns

Applicant Process and Timeline for Strategy 1 and 2:

This funding cycle covers the final year of the Foundation’s five year strategic plan. The Foundation will be undertaking a strategic planning process starting in the Fall of 2013. Please refer to the letter that was sent to your organization in October for additional information about the planning process and timeline.

The application process for the 2014 cycle is by invitation only to current grantees only.

Please review these guidelines carefully to determine if your program fits the parameters. After reviewing the guidelines and application questions, applicants may request a phone call with Apryl Rhinehart before beginning the application. Contact Apryl Rhinehart to schedule a phone appointment, at arhinehart@marincf.org or 415.464.2509.

The Grant Application Center (GAC) can be accessed at http://online.marincf.org/. This system will enable you to provide all required information online, without having to fill out and send in paperwork.

Please note that first‐time applicants must register before the application can be accessed; the registration process takes one day to complete. To register please follow instructions found at http://online.marincf.org/

  • Open Registration Date: November 1, 2013
  • Full proposals are due by close of business on Monday December 2, 2013.
  • Funding decisions will be announced in early February 2014.

Grants, Results, and More

Click here to learn about grants made under this goal area, along with results, an impact story, and background about this issue.

One Nation Bay Area

If you have any questions, please contact Shirin Vakharia at 415.464.2523 or by email.

The San Francisco Foundation, Silicon Valley Community Foundation, Marin Community Foundation and Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders in Philanthropy (AAPIP) are partnering with the One Nation Foundation over the next two years to strengthen relationships between Muslim and non-Muslim communities in the Bay Area.

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Program Director, Art, Social Justice & Interfaith Understanding

Program Director, Art, Social Justice & Interfaith Understanding

Larry Best

Program Director, Art, Social Justice & Interfaith Understanding

415.464.2523

"The more I work with the MCF, the more impressed I am by the Foundation's professionalism, commitment to mission, and dedication to donor charitable intentions. MCF is an exceptional resource to our charitable community and provides much needed stewardship of donor assets. I am always very pleased to be able to refer clients to them."

Julia Sze, CFA
Senior Investment  Strategist, Wells Fargo Family Wealth Group, member of MCF's Investment Committee, and a donor since 2006