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Mid-Sized Capital Grants

The Richard and Susan Smith Family Foundation will consider requests for support for transformative capital projects in the $250,000-$3 million range from agencies that are well-led, can point to significant accomplishments, and have a mission that is clearly aligned with that of the Foundation.

The Trustees’ intent in presenting this opportunity is not to provide general support for larger, multi-million dollar capital campaigns, but rather to catalyze discrete, identifiable projects that meet a specific need in keeping with the Foundation’s mission. Projects that might be funded include those that enliven public spaces, such as recreational or community facilities, parks, or public art, as well as projects that improve the quality of life and well-being of individuals and families, and provide for the benefit of entire neighborhoods and communities.

The requested funds must be for a game-changing physical asset that will permanently enhance an agency’s service delivery potential, either by enabling it to serve significantly more clients, provide new and vitally important services, or improve the quality of its existing programs in deep and lasting ways. Requests are considered on a rolling basis. Please note that this is the most competitive program at the Foundation, with at most one to two grants awarded annually from among 40 or more inquiries.

Examples of previously funded projects that meet these criteria include a universally accessible park and playground at Children’s Wharf, a new Boys & Girls Club teen center in Mattapan, and an overnight shelter for homeless youth in Cambridge. Please review the list of recent Mid-Sized Capital grantees to assess whether your project aligns well with the program’s objectives.
 
Eligible Applicants
To be eligible for a Mid-Sized Capital Grant, an applicant must be:

  • A nonprofit organization with 501(c)3 tax-exempt status or a fiscal sponsor that is a 501(c)3 public charity
  • An agency whose primary mission aligns with an issue area in which the Foundation funds. Possible issue areas of interest include, among others:
    • cultural and economic vitality
    • economic mobility and/or human services
    • youth development
    • health
  • An agency or program within an agency that serves people in Greater Boston (roughly defined as within Route 128) and/or in the Gateway Cities of Brockton, Chelsea, Fall River, Lawrence, Lowell, Lynn, or New Bedford.

In seeking a Mid-Sized Capital Grant, the recipient organization must demonstrate that it will have sufficient funding to maintain and repair the capital project over time and to support programs that make maximum use of the funded project.

Ineligible applicants include: individuals; endowments or private foundations; religious organizations, where the grant is to be used for sectarian purposes; federal, state, or municipal agencies (with rare exceptions); or political campaigns.
 
Process For Consideration
If you believe your work aligns with the Foundation’s funding criteria for a Mid-Sized Capital Grant, please send a letter of inquiry via email to info@smithfamilyfoundation.net. Please include the following information (500 word maximum): organization name, annual operating budget, target population and geographic area served, a concise description of the organization and a brief description of the project you would like the Foundation to consider, including the total project cost and remaining need. The Foundation will review all such emails on a rolling basis and organizations will typically hear back within six-months. However, due to the high volume of inquiries received for a limited number of funding opportunities, few organizations will be invited to submit full proposals.
 
Please review the Frequently Asked Questions for further information about the Foundation’s processes.
 
Recent Mid-Sized Capital Grantees »
 

Photo credits: Rose Kennedy Greenway Conservancy/Sean Collins (Janet Echelman Sculpture); Greg Premru/Studio G Architects (Y2Y Harvard Square)

Mid-Sized Capital Grants