Photo courtesy of Rhode Island Foundation

The Rhode Island Foundation is offering local libraries, schools, municipal agencies and nonprofit groups grants of up to $10,000 to fund proposals that bring people together as a community. March 12 is the deadline to apply.

“We are looking for proposals that will enhance the quality of life, form relationships, and increase connections. Our goal is to make unique and important things happen that will enliven neighborhoods and build bonds that last,” said Jenny Pereira, vice president of grants and community investments in a statement included in a press release from Rhode Island Foundation. “We also will consider factors like whether proposals will serve and are led by historically marginalized communities.”

Last year, the Foundation says that it awarded $356,000 in grants statewide, Newport County recipients include the Boys and Girls Clubs of Newport County, which received $2,628 to offer diversity training to Middletown High School students; the Conanicut Island Land Trust in Jamestown, which received $5,000 to add six community garden beds at Godena Farm; and the Norman Bird Sanctuary in Middletown, which received $9,200 to support its “Sanctuary in Your Backyard” program.

Proposals should spark community engagement at the local level, be easily accessible, create new or enhance existing partnerships, be relevant to the particular community, promote the role of shared public spaces as local anchors, be doable and demonstrate a meaningful impact. Priority will be given to proposals that include community support such as matching grants, the participation of volunteers and donated space or other forms of in-kind contributions.

While both new initiatives and enhancements to existing projects are eligible, the grants are intended to support one-time costs and expenses. Applicants will not be eligible for renewed funding for the same project in future years. Capital campaigns, endowments, for-profit entities, individuals, political groups and lobbying efforts are not eligible.

The Rhode Island Foundation is the largest and most comprehensive funder of nonprofit organizations in Rhode Island. Working with generous and visionary donors, the Foundation raised $68 million and awarded a record $87 million in grants in 2020. Since its centennial five years ago, the Foundation has awarded more than $284 million in grants and has raised more than $328 million. Through leadership, fundraising and grant-making activities, often in partnership with individuals and organizations, the Foundation is helping Rhode Island reach its true potential.

For more information about applying for a Community Grant, visit

This story was originally published on March 5, 2021.