Our Grant Opportunities

COMPETITIVE GRANTS (RANGE $15,000-$100,000)

Updated March 23, 2020

In light of needs that have arisen from the COVID-19 pandemic Robins Foundation is opening our grant cycle to proposals that respond to new needs within the education continuum.

Please note that approved grants from this cycle will not be deployed until September. For assistance with immediate needs related to COVID-19, please find information about the Central Virginia COVID-19 Response Fund, here.

Our competitive grants cycles are for organizations seeking funding for programs and projects that make the Richmond region the best place for children to learn, grow and thrive.

2020 Submission Deadlines

Tuesday, June 30 at 5:00 pm
for notification in September

Please carefully review the following eligibility requirements:

  1. Your proposed initiative will impact youth along the education continuum.
  2. Your proposal is for programmatic or capacity services that will improve the life of residents within the Greater Richmond area.
  3. Your organization is registered in our online grants management system, SmartSimple, and your organizational profile is up-to-date. Please verify your mailing address, CEO, mission statement, and primary contact information. Use the links on the bottom of your homepage to navigate this step.
  4. You have spoken to a Program Officer to discuss your project PRIOR to submitting a grant application. This conversation must occur within seven (7) days of the cycle opening. To discuss your request, please submit pre-grant questions to grants@robinsfdn.org. These are located on the “Before You Apply” tab in SmartSimple or the “How to Apply FAQs” page of our website.
  5. Your organization does not have an “open” grant at the time of the award. This means you should only apply if your organization has not received competitive funding from Robins Foundation within the last twelve (12) months.
  6. You have reviewed the Robins Foundation Grant Terms at the bottom of the “Useful Links” page of our website.

In order to apply for competitive funding, your first step is to submit to the Grants Manager, ONE of the following two documents. These documents can be found in the SmartSimple portal and are linked in descriptions below:

After submitting one of these forms, our Program and Grants Manager will determine eligibility and, if appropriate, direct you to schedule a 30-minute phone conversation with a Program Officer. During these calls, you will have the opportunity to discuss in further detail your organization’s ‘fit’ with our priorities, our grant process, and requirements for funding. Please note these conversations must occur before Friday, May 8, 2020 to be eligible to apply.

We have two deadlines per year for grantees seeking funding. Grantees can receive funding once per calendar year. Our deadlines for Competitive Grants are listed below; please choose the timing that best suits your organization. Grant applications will be available one month before the submission deadline via our online grants system.

We look forward to reviewing proposals which address our program areas.

Please find a copy of our Competitive Grant proposal questions, here.

In order to apply for Competitive funding, your first step is to submit to the Grants Manager, ONE of the following two documents. These documents can be found in the SmartSimple portal and are linked in descriptions below:

   

After submitting one of these forms, our Program and Grants Manager will determine eligibility and, if appropriate, direct you to schedule a 30-minute phone conversation with a Program Officer. During these calls, you will have the opportunity to discuss in further detail your organization’s ‘fit’ with our priorities, our grant process, and requirements for funding. We schedule pre-grant conversations beginning one month before the Competitive call opens. Please note, in order to be eligible to apply for Competitive funding, these conversations must occur before the end of the first week the Competitive call is open.

THE LORA M. AND E. CLAIBORNE ROBINS, SR. COMMUNITY INNOVATION GRANT (UP TO $500,000)

At Robins Foundation we connect our past with our future by highlighting the innovative and progressive characteristics of our founders. We know that our nonprofit partners have the expertise to create solutions to the most pressing challenges our region faces today.

Awarded annually the Lora M. and E. Claiborne Robins, Sr. Community Innovation Grant (CIG) funds one proposal that applauds the imaginative, cooperative spirit of Greater Richmond. The award is designed to support a project that addresses unmet community needs or issues.

Proposals should demonstrate an innovative approach to solving the need, strategic collaboration and the potential for wider, long-term impact on the impacted audience.

The 2020 Lora M. and E. Claiborne Robins, Sr. Community Innovation Grant application is now closed. Our $500,000 grant recipient will be announced in early March 2020.

Click here to view a recorded information session.


 

STRATEGIC PARTNERSHIPS

We invite organizations ready for a specialized “deep dive” into business planning and organizational change capacity funding which provides multi-year support for organizational growth in critical operations areas: Governance, Management, Finance, Fundraising/Development (Relationship Building) and Program Service and Delivery.

We know that to succeed, nonprofit organizations must be participating members of a strong community of leaders. We will use several tools to support leadership development, collaboration and the strengthening of resources “from the inside out” of an organization.


 

DIRECTOR INITIATED GRANT OPPORTUNITIES

Each member of our Board of Directors can sponsor a limited number of grants to organizations they consider deserving of support. These recommendations are strictly at the discretion of individual Board members. Organizations may not solicit Board members for these funds.


 

ADDITIONAL FACTS ABOUT OUR FUNDING

Robins Foundation grants attempt to improve the life of residents within the city of Richmond and the surrounding counties of Chesterfield and Henrico.

We do not make grants for:

  • Organizations other than 501 (c)(3) nonprofits
  • Individuals, private foundation churches or religious programs, fraternal, social or labor organizations
  • Political parties, candidates or lobbying activities
  • Travel funds for tours, exhibitions or trips by individuals or special interest groups
  • Local athletic/sports programs or equipment, courtesy advertising benefits, raffle tickets and other fundraising or special events
  • Scholarships, fellowships or sponsors for a cause
  • For-profit entities

In accordance with our grant making priorities, we generally do not fund:

  • Private schools
  • National health organizations with a focus on single disease
  • Projects outside our geographic reach

Robins Foundation provides funding support to organizations serving the needs of youth within the Tri-Cities when it is in addition to the Greater Richmond area. The Foundation rarely provides funding support to organizations with services that are solely/largely focused outside of our geographic reach.

If you are unsure whether or not you should apply, please feel free to contact Robins staff.

Robins Foundation provides an inclusive and welcoming environment for all. Robins Foundation does not and shall not discriminate based on race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, age, national origin (ancestry), disability, marital status, sexual orientation or military — in any of its activities or operations. These activities include, but are not limited to, hiring and firing of staff, selection of Board members and grantees, and provision of services from vendors. The Foundation is committed to the work and partnerships that make Richmond a vibrant community in which to live, work and raise a family, where all its citizens have abundant opportunities to thrive. Any derogatory statements or actions made by individuals are in no way reflective of or supported by the Foundation.

Our Funding Drivers

EDUCATION

Little girls playing

Partnering with nonprofits, peers, and community leaders to achieve measurable results.

Learn of our ongoing relationship with a local community support center

INNOVATION

young boy w/ circuit boards

Leveraging innovative programs to drive policy and action to benefit the entire region.

Learn how we supported a state-wide STEM initiative

COMMUNITY CAPACITY

Virginia Union graduation

Welcoming and empowering all voices to create an environment of fairness and opportunity for everyone to thrive.

Learn how we helped a community tap into their own power to improve fairness