Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo

The Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation Funds


Ralph C. Wilson, Jr.

Ralph C. Wilson, Jr.

The Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo will begin accepting Letters of Intent (LOI) for the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation Funds from January 3, 2017 until 4 p.m. on January 20, 2017.

Please see the link below to submit an LOI.

Background:

The Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation established endowment funds at the Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo to provide annual support for programs and initiatives that reflect the personal passions of Mr. Wilson. These areas of support are: Caregiving, Community Assets, Design and Access, and Youth Sports.

The grants made from these Field of Interest Funds held at the Community Foundation are distinct from the grants made by the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation directly. In most cases, the grants made from these Funds at the Community Foundation serve to support very localized projects across the WNY region for which a smaller grant can make all the difference. In some cases, it may also provide an opportunity to test out ideas and programs on a smaller, pilot level.

About the Foundation:

Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. believed effective change should make an impact from the start, yet carry long into the future. To do both, he earmarked a portion of his estate and the eventual sale of his beloved Buffalo Bills to fund his namesake foundation. The Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation began operations in 2015 to continue his legacy-one of generosity and innovation, healthy risk taking and collaboration and an unshakeable community focus.

And today, his hand-picked Life Trustees have determined to focus the efforts of the foundation on Mr. Wilson’s home and adopted home regions of Southeast Michigan and Western New York.

About the Funds:

The Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo is honored that the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation trustees, as part of their investments, have chosen to work with the Community Foundation in this way, to permanently support organizations and causes that Mr. Wilson cared about so deeply. The Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Field of Interest Funds support grants in four key areas that honor the lifetime interests of Mr. Wilson:

  • Caregiving
    Improve support for caregivers – whether paid or voluntary – through efforts that provide needed skills, resources, education and respite. Caregivers are those who look after dependent individuals such as children with special needs, disabled adults and older adults who require caregiving. Projects supported through this fund should have a direct impact on caregivers. In 2017, funding will support the objectives detailed here.
  • Community Assets
    Support significant cultural and historic assets and/or increase access to long-term arts instruction for youth. In 2017, funding will support the objectives detailed here.
  • Design and Access
    Increase the health and quality of life of WNY residents of all ages by enhancing outdoor activities within the region. In 2017, funding will support the objectives detailed here.
  • Youth Sports
    Increase access and affordability of all forms of physical activity for youth through organized or casual play with the aim of expressing or improving physical fitness and mental well-being. In 2017, funding will support the objectives detailed here.

For additional information on eligibility for each of the funds, please click here to download the goals and objectives for this grant process.

About the Grants:

Grant requests should range between $10,000 and $25,000 for Caregiving, Community Assets and Youth Sports. Design and Access requests should range between $10,000 and $50,000. Funds will be released after grant requirements and obligations has been signed and returned.

2017 Initial Funding Timeline:

  • December 13, 2016 - Optional meeting at the Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo to review the process, application, and reporting processes
    • Caregiving – 10:30 - 11:30 a.m.
    • Community Assets – 12:00 - 1:00 p.m.
    • Design and Access – 1:30 - 2:30 p.m.
    • Youth Sports – 3:00 - 4:00 p.m.
  • January 3, 2017 – Letters of Intent (LOI) process open online
  • January 20, 2017 – Deadline for LOI submission 4 p.m.
  • February 15, 2017 – Notification to organizations
  • March 15, 2017 – Deadline for full application submission 4 p.m.
  • May 2017 – Grant recipient notification
  • Beginning June 1, 2017 – Grants will begin distribution
  • Grant reports are due one year after award

Optional Meeting:

There will be an optional meeting for prospective applicants on December 13, 2016 (see times above) at the Community Foundation (located at 726 Exchange Street, Suite 525). Please email Laura Schwamborn at LauraS@cfgb.org by December 9, 2016 with the session(s) you plan to attend.

Who May Apply:

For Caregiving, Design and Access, and Youth Sports 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations that meet the guidelines described above and reside in Western New York may apply for a grant. Western New York is defined as Allegany, Chautauqua, Cattaraugus, Erie, Genesee, Niagara, Orleans and Wyoming counties.

For Caregiving, government agencies may also apply.

For Community Assets, only 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations that reside in Erie County may apply.

Additional Information:

  • There is a limit to one letter of inquiry per organization per funding category
  • Multi-year requests will not be accepted
  • Requests for endowments, religious purposes, attendance at or sponsorship of events, and for schools not registered with the NYS Education Department will not be accepted
  • Please click here to review frequently asked questions

How to Apply:

The Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo will begin accepting Letters of Intent (LOI) for the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation Funds from January 3, 2017 until 4 p.m. on January 20, 2017.

Contact

  • If you have questions about applying to Youth Sports or Caregiving, please contact Brigid Doherty at BrigidD@cfgb.org
  • If you have questions about Design and Access, please contact Cara Matteliano at LauraS@cfgb.org
  • If you have questions about applying to Community Assets, please contact Jean McKeown at JeanM@cfgb.org

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