Grants & Scholarships


Community Grant Program

  • Program Guidelines

    Guiding Principles

    • We believe that creative and sustainable solutions come from people who work in partnership to address common needs and aspirations.
    • We give high priority to investments that create positive, substantive change and attempt to resolve problems at their source.
    • We recognize and respect Oregon's diverse regions and populations, and we seek to advance equity, diversity and inclusion through our programs.

    Program Details

    As a responsive arm of OCF, the Community Grants Program awards about 175 grants per grant cycle, twice per year, mostly to small- and moderate-size nonprofits. The average grant is $20,000. OCF typically receives between 400-500 proposals per grant cycle. Concerns central to OCF’s evaluation of proposed projects include:

    • The strength of local support for the project
    • The strength of the applicant organization
    • Whether the project addresses a significant community need

    Please review the full Program Guidelines, which include tips on submitting a competitive proposal as well as guidance on capacity-building and capital requests. OCF will also consider how well the project fits Community Grants funding priorities.

  • Eligibility & Competitiveness

    Most Common Reasons for a Decline

    1. Little or no funding has been secured
    2. Community support is not evident
    3. Project request is operating support 
    4. Applicant is a frequent grant recipient


    • Must have 501(c)(3) status as a public charity (not a private foundation), be a public entity, or have a qualified fiscal sponsor.
    • Cannot apply until previous grant funded project(s) have been completed and reports submitted.  
    • Cannot apply for the same project twice.
    • How often can I apply? See bottom of this page for details.

    Activities Typically Not Eligible for Funding

    • Events or performances (either one-time or annual) unless they will result in significant growth in ongoing organizational capacity, financial stability or audience diversity
    • Annual fund appeals and contributions to endowments
    • Projects in individual schools
    • Grants to subsidize participation (scholarships) or re-granting programs
    • Purchases or activities that occur prior to grant decisions
    • Deficit funding
    • Replacement of government funding
    • Lobbying to influence legislation
    • Scientific research
    • Religious activities 

    How often can an organization apply for a Community Grant?

    • If you apply and DO NOT receive a grant, you may not apply for another grant until 12 months after your previous application was submitted. Essentially this means one application per 12-month period if you were unsuccessful in seeking a grant.
    • If you apply and DO receive a grant, you may not apply for another grant until 18 months after your previous application was submitted. This means you must finish your 12-month grant period and present your post-grant evaluation before you may submit a new application – the equivalent of an 18-month period. (The only exception is a multi-year award, which requires a renewal application each year.)

    Original Application Date

    Grant Awarded?

    End of Grant Period -Report Deadline

    Eligibility to apply for another Community Grant

    July 15, 2018

    Yes, awarded Nov 2, 2018

    Nov 2, 2019

    Jan 15, 2020 or later

    July 15, 2018

    Yes, awarded Nov 2, 2018 with an invitation to reapply (Multi-year renewal)

    See renewal application date

    Renewal Application due July 15, 2019

    July 15, 2018

    No, application declined

    Not applicable

    July 15, 2019

  • Application Process

    Application Process

    Applications are accepted through MyOCF, our online application system. 


    Spring Cycle: Application window opens December 1. Applications due January 15 at midnight with board decision in May.
    Fall Cycle: Application window opens June 1. Applications due July 15 at midnight with board decision in November. 
    Renewal applications follow the same process as new application

    The application window for the Fall 2018 cycle is now open from June 1, 2018 to July 15, 2018.

    These are documents you will be uploading at the end of your application:

    • 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status letter from the IRS
    • Board of directors list, including contact information, affiliations, plus the skills and experience each contributes to the organization
    • Organization budget for current year
    • Organization budget for past year
    • Most recent audited financial statements (if available)
    • Multi-year project budget (if applicable)
    • Project graphic, schematic or timeline (optional)

    PLEASE NOTE: We strongly recommend using Chrome, Firefox, or Internet Explorer to fill out your application. Safari has been found to have some technical difficulties.

  • Grantee Reporting

    Grantee Reporting

    A grantee progress report is due one year after the grant award. Please submit the grant evaluation form by email to

    What if my project is delayed or off-track?

    We know that projects do not always begin on time; unexpected events can interfere with progress, and projects sometimes fail despite good planning and intentions. Our philosophy is that if all of our grant-funded projects are successful, we are not taking enough risks.

    Please do not delay submitting your report for fear our reaction will be negative. Also, please feel free to contact us with any questions. We can delay a report due date if your situation calls for it.

  • Staff Assistance

    Staff Assistance

    Tips for Nonprofits Communicating with OCF (PDF). Tips, guidelines and FAQ's before you contact OCF

    Portland Office: 503.227.6846

    For proposals the metro area and on the north coast, please contact:

    Eugene Office: 541.431.7099

    For proposals in Benton, Douglas, Lane, Linn, Coos, and Curry counties, please contact:

    Salem Office: 503.779.1927

    For proposals in Polk, Marion, and Yamhill counties, please contact:

    Roberto usually is in the Salem office Mondays and Fridays, and is available other days by appointment.

    Bend Office: 541.382.1170

    For proposals in Central and Eastern Oregon, please contact:

    Medford Office: 541.773.8987

    For proposals in Jackson, Josephine, Klamath and Lake counties, please contact: