WHAT KIND OF GRANTS DO YOU FUND?
The Connecticut Health Foundation (CT Health) awards three types of grants:
- Program grant — Each quarter, CT Health awards grants for projects with the potential for broader, systems level change that will advance health equity for people of color. These projects must align with at least one of the foundation’s strategic objectives.
- Requests for proposals — CT Health occasionally solicits proposals for specific types of projects that stem from one of the foundation’s strategic objectives
- President’s discretionary grant— CT Health awards grants of $1,000 to $25,000 to organizations and institutions that respond to the foundation’s overall mission. Discretionary grant funding is often provided on a one-time basis for immediate projects that align with CT Health’s strategic plan. Examples include projects that are testing new ideas, time-sensitive, or work that requires emergency funding.
WHAT KINDS OF ORGANIZATIONS RECEIVE GRANTS FROM CT HEALTH?
Typically, we award grants to:
- Organizations with IRS 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status
- State and municipal public agencies
- Public and private university institutions
- Coalitions, advocacy groups or collaboratives with a responsible fiscal agent that has 501(c)(3) status
MY ORGANIZATION DOES NOT HAVE TAX-EXEMPT STATUS. DO I NEED A FISCAL SPONSOR?
Yes. A fiscal sponsor is another organization that has 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status that agrees, in writing, to allow you to seek grants and solicit tax-deductible donations under its exempt status. This nonprofit will distribute the award on your behalf.
DO YOU AWARD GRANTS TO ORGANIZATIONS OUTSIDE CONNECTICUT?
Yes, but only for projects that are focused on Connecticut and designed to benefit Connecticut residents.
ARE THERE THINGS THAT YOU DON’T FUND?
We do not fund the following kinds of projects:
- Grants to individuals
- Direct services
- Clinical laboratory research
- Capital projects, endowments, or chairs associated with universities or medical schools
- Projects that do not benefit Connecticut residents
- Lobbying or influencing the outcomes of proposed legislation or an election
WHAT IS THE RANGE OF DOLLAR AMOUNTS FOR THE GRANTS FUNDED AND AVERAGE LENGTH OF PROJECTS?
We typically award grants in the $30,000 to $100,000 range. Higher amounts may be awarded to ideas with the potential for the highest impact. Projects are typically funded for 12 months.
DO YOU FUND INDIRECT (AKA ADMINISTRATIVE OR OVERHEAD) COSTS?
We support indirect costs, commonly referred to as overhead expenses, of up to 15 percent of the total budget. These funds can support supervisory oversight of the project, fiscal management, facility maintenance, and other administrative expenses necessary for the organization to implement the project. If using a fiscal agent, the applicant must specify the indirect cost between the grant project and the fiscal agent. Indirect costs are not allowed for President’s Discretionary Grant Awards.
WHAT IS YOUR GRANTMAKING STRATEGY? WHY DO YOU FUND WHAT YOU FUND?
Our grants are focused on changing systems.
One approach we use is to fund demonstration models. That means investing in an innovative program and supporting its growth into a sustainable model. The goal is to ultimately watch it grow without the need for the foundation’s financial help.
Here are some examples of the types of grants we have awarded:
Funding to develop a better way to deliver care: The Wheeler Clinic, a well-established behavioral health organization, was considering ways to better address the physical health needs of its clients. Instead of paying for the clinic to hire medical staff, we provided funding to develop data gathering and analysis capabilities that allowed them to better understand their clients’ needs and develop a model for delivering effective care to patients with significant physical and behavioral health needs. >>>Read more
Funding to become sustainable: School-based health centers provide critically needed medical and behavioral health care to children and teens, at locations they can easily access. But these health centers have struggled to maintain their services because of cuts in state funding. Rather than giving money to maintain their operations, we have funded research to help school-based health centers identify ways to become financially sustainable and provided grants to help them develop the capabilities and certification necessary to do so.
Funding to find a new way to solve a problem: Children of color who are at risk of developmental disorders are often diagnosed far later than white children, and those who are diagnosed are less likely to receive care from specialists. To address disparities in early intervention, we awarded a grant to Connecticut Children’s Medical Center to pilot a new model aimed at improving screening and referral by embedding early intervention staff from the state’s Birth to Three program in pediatricians’ offices. As part of the grant, they will evaluate whether this model improves screening and referral rates, and develop a business plan for replicating this approach if it is successful. >>>Read more
Often, our grantmaking approach leads us to fund larger entities, such as the Connecticut State Medical Society or the Connecticut Hospital Association, because they have a strong reach: When they find an innovative approach to health equity, they can share it widely and embed it into multiple organizations within the state.
At the same time, we recognize the need to ensure that conversations about health equity and disparities include those most impacted by these issues. Our belief is those most impacted must have a voice in creating solutions. As a result, we also award grants for diverse advocacy, faith-based advocacy, and immigrants’ rights. The idea is to elevate community voices, to encourage local organizations to determine what policies would improve things for their communities, and give them tools to become more engaged in advocacy.
WHY DOES THE FOUNDATION PROVIDE GRANTS TO MEDIA ORGANIZATIONS?
Ensuring there is a robust and informed conversation about health care and health equity is key to our mission. News reporting on health care provides insights, informs debates, and ensures that critical topics reach broad audiences. However, the ability of news organizations to fund this kind of in-depth health reporting has eroded in recent years. Recognizing that the media is critical to having an informed society and to enabling citizens to thoroughly understand important policy matters, the Connecticut Health Foundation has provided grants to nonprofit media organizations for coverage of health equity issues. The funding is awarded with an understanding that the journalism will be independent and that the grant will play no role in the editorial decisions made as part of the news organization’s health equity coverage.
WHAT’S THE FIRST STEP IN SUBMITTING MY PROPOSAL?
The first step is to read through our Grantseeker Guidelines.
WHEN ARE APPLICATIONS DUE?
Each of our grant types has different application dates. Please review our grants process here. Deadlines are listed in step 2.
HOW DO I SUBMIT MY APPLICATION?
The Connecticut Health Foundation has an online portal where you submit applications. Visit https://cthealth.fluxx.io to review funding opportunities and apply. Resources are provided here to help you register and navigate the portal.
WHAT IS THE PROCESS FOR REVIEWING GRANT PROPOSALS?
Most applications are subject to a rigorous internal review process before the board of directors makes a final decision. Here is an overview:
- Applicant submits a concept paper
- Staff reviews concept paper
- Staff provides feedback and technical assistance to the applicant
- Once the application is submitted, staff reviews it and makes a recommendation to the board’s program committee, which meets quarterly
- The program committee reviews the application and votes
- If accepted, the application is forwarded to the full board for approval
- If the application is approved by the board, a formal letter of award and grant agreement are sent to the grantee
HOW LONG DOES THE PROCESS TAKE, FROM SUBMISSION TO FINAL DECISION?
Our grant application and review process takes about three months.
WHEN DO WE FIND OUT IF WE WILL BE RECEIVING A GRANT?
Our board meets quarterly. CT Health staff will notify all applicants of the board’s final decision in writing or by phone within seven business days of board meetings.
IF MY PROPOSAL IS ACCEPTED, WHEN DO I RECEIVE MY GRANT MONEY?
After notification, CT Health will mail a grant agreement to the new grantee. Once a grantee returns a signed grant agreement, CT Health will distribute funds as specified in the agreement. Grantees who receive a President’s Discretionary Grant Award will receive the full amount upon receipt of a signed grant agreement.
I’VE RECEIVED A GRANT, WHAT COMES NEXT? HOW DOES THE FOUNDATION WORK WITH GRANTEES?
Every grant awarded by the foundation is assigned a program officer. This is because we believe that working closely and collaboratively with our grantees is critical to our success.
The role of the program officer is to serve as a resource and direct contact for all questions regarding the grant. We value honest and candid assessment of grant progress, so regular communication between the program officer and grantee is critical. Regular communication can also be helpful in identifying areas of the project that are working particularly well or areas that need evaluation and course correction.
In addition to regular communication, we require grantees to submit interim and final reports. For 12-month grants, this means submitting an interim report capturing progress through the first six months of the grant and a final report at the end of the grant period. These reports provide grantees an opportunity to capture the progress made toward the projects goals and to reflect on what they have learned.
Because we believe in constantly learning, we commonly ask our grantees to participate in “learning collaboratives.” This could involve hearing from a thought leader on a particular subject or having grantees come together to discuss challenge and brainstorm solutions.
WHAT IF I DON’T FIND THE INFORMATION I NEED ON THIS WEBSITE?
If you have additional questions, you can contact our program office at firstname.lastname@example.org.