Grant Eligibility Criteria and Guidelines


IMPACT 100 Redwood Circle members want our funds to make a significant difference in our communities. With the annual Impact Grant, we honor a high impact project/program within the areas of health, education and human services, arts and culture or environmental work.  The annual Community Grants allow us to offer right-sized grants for the community’s non-profits that require smaller awards for their project or program.

IMPACT 100 Redwood Circle’s funding cycle runs from January to December, with proposals solicited and evaluated. The Impact $100,000 Grant will be awarded each year at the annual meeting.

Organizations may apply for both the $100,000 Impact Grant and the smaller Community Grants within the same funding year.


Eligibility Criteria:

Applicants for the $100,000 Impact Grant must meet the following criteria to be nominated for a grant from IMPACT 100 Redwood Circle:

  1. Be tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code
  2. Be in operation for at least 36 months prior to applying for the Impact Grant
  3. Provide services in the geographic area and benefitting the residents of Sonoma County excluding Sonoma Valley (Kenwood to Schellville)
  4. Expend 100% of funds awarded by Impact 100 Redwood Circle as described in the grant application.
  5. Funds must be used within a 24-month period. The organization has up to 3 years to demonstrate the impact of the Grant. The monies will be distributed based on the project/program needs with the organization determining the appropriate disbursal intervals.
  6. A project/program will be considered if it serves a diverse population without regard to religion or require faith-based activity, but can be under the auspices of a religious organization or physically housed in a religious organization.


Grant Funds Support:

  • An existing project/program with specific program analysis data and outcomes
  • The expansion of an existing project/program
  • Launching a new program
  • Technology, both software and hardware, if it is integral to the proposed project or program.
  • Grant can be used for capital purchase but only if it’s designated for a specific measurable project/program under consideration for the Impact Grant.
  • Funds may be designated for general operating expenses and overhead specific to the project being funded.

*A capital expenditure is for an asset that the owner intends to hold and derive benefit from for a period of one year or more, and that the owner depreciates or amortizes over the asset’s expected life.


Grant Funds May Not Be Used in These Ways:

  • General operating expenses
  • Debt reduction or operational deficits
  • Grants to individuals
  • Private foundations
  • Endowment funding
  • Interim or bridge funding
  • Partisan, legislative, or political activity
  • Fees paid to a grant writer or for fundraising activities
  • Projects of religious organizations or bodies of worship
  • Annual appeals or fundraising drives, activities, or events
  • General capital campaigns unrelated to a specific project


Guidelines for Impact Grant:

  1. Applicant must select only one focus area in which to be considered. Focus areas are   1) arts & culture, 2) environment, 3) health, education and human services
  2. Final proposal should include a time-bound budget with measurable goals.
  3. Grant recipient must submit periodic progress reports and work with the Liaison Committee for the duration of the grant period.
  4. Organizations awarded Impact Grants may not apply for the $100,000 Impact Grant for the following 3 years. However, an organization is eligible for a Grant if the organization received an Impact Grant within the last 3 years from Impact 100 Sonoma Valley.
  5. An organization may submit only one application each year.
  6. Incomplete applications or missed deadlines will disqualify the application.
  7. IMPACT 100 Redwood Circle reserves the right to change eligibility criteria at any time without prior notice.


The 2018 Community Grants cycle runs from January to June.

Grant Funds may be used for:

  1. General operating funds, capacity building, capital purchases, special programs/projects, and sponsorships (excluding those for fundraising purposes)
  2. Specific short-term projects to be completed within one year of receipt of funds

Eligibility Criteria: Nonprofit organizations must:

  1. Legally operate as one of the following:
  • Tax exempt under IRS code 503c3 and registered with the Registry of the Charitable Trusts, State of California Department of Justice for a minimum of two years and be in sound financial condition.
  • Under the formal fiscal sponsorship of another organization’s 501c3 status for a minimum of two years and be in sound financial condition.
  • As a program of a local government entity; or an un-endowed foundation which was developed to support a public entity, (e.g., a public school foundation or Friends of the Commission on Aging)
  1. Be non-discriminatory on the basis of race, gender, sexual identification or orientation, spiritual beliefs, national origin or immigration status.
  2. Operate as a program or project within the following five charitable sectors: (grant proposals must state which sector they represent to support grant funding in diverse sectors)
  • Arts & Culture
  • Environment
  • Education
  • Health
  • Human Services
  1. Operate a program or project in the geographical area of Sonoma County
  2. The following are ineligible for Community Grants:
  • Organizations and/or projects aimed to solely benefit Sonoma Valley residents
  • Organizations and/or projects that exclusively serve religious purposes and/or require religious activity as a condition of receiving services
  • International projects
  • Legislation and public policy and/or lobbying
  1. Receipt of a Community Grant does not impact an organization’s eligibility for an Impact Grant and vice versa. Awardees of a Community Grant may not apply for another Community Grant the following year, but may apply thereafter.

Exclusion Criteria: Community Grants May Not be used for:

  1. Debt reduction or operational deficits
  2. Grants to individuals
  3. Private foundations
  4. Endowment funding
  5. Interim or bridge funding
  6. Partisan, legislative, or political activity
  7. Fees paid to a grant writer or for fundraising activities
  8. Projects of religious organizations or bodies of worship, unless the project is secular in nature
  9. Annual appeals or fundraising drives, activities or events
  10. General capital campaigns unrelated to a specific project