Theme: “Navigating Challenging Waters”

Welcome to West Marin Fund’s Community Grants 2021

West Marin Fund is a community foundation that inspires giving and mobilizes resources to enhance the long-term wellbeing and quality of life for all in coastal West Marin. We provide grants and training for local nonprofits and convene key stakeholders to help identify and fund equitable solutions to challenges facing people who live, work and visit in West Marin.

The purpose of this Community Grants round is to support nonprofits to improve their services in West Marin in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and other external challenges.

We invite applications from nonprofit organizations and groups that are responding to the social, economic, and health consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic in West Marin. We recognize the ongoing distress faced by many people who live, work and study here, and the important role that nonprofits play in supporting and assisting them. We also recognize the organizational challenges that nonprofits themselves face in navigating challenging times and the importance of strengthening their services with sufficient resources, adaptive skills, strong teamwork and a solid infrastructure. We are committed to supporting activities that promote justice, diversity, equity and inclusion; challenge racism; and positively effect the health and wellbeing particularly of Black, Indigenous and People of Color and members of low-income households.

Application Deadline

Applications must be submitted online by 5:00pm on Tuesday May 25th, 2021.


  • Tuesday May 25th, 2021 – Online submission deadline
  • Late-June, 2021 – Notification of decision, grants disbursed
  • May 1st, 2022 – Grant expended, activities completed
  • May 31st, 2022 – Final report due

And once the storm is over, you won’t remember how you made it through, how you managed to survive. You won’t even be sure, whether the storm is really over. But one thing is certain. When you come out of the storm, you won’t be the same person who walked in.

– Haruki Murakami

Purpose & Approach

With this round of community grants, West Marin Fund offers nonprofit organizations the opportunity to improve their services in West Marin in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and other external challenges.

Organizations need to show that they:

  • Have an informed analysis of the challenges currently facing people who live, work and visit in West Marin;
  • Have a stated plan and goals for addressing those challenges;
  • Have provided services in the last 12 months that made a difference to more than a handful of persons;
  • Are advancing racial justice, diversity, equity and inclusion;
  • Have the ability to innovate, by pivoting existing activities or introducing new ones;
  • Can demonstrate responsible fiscal management and adequate accounting procedures;
  • Have a fundraising plan in place;
  • Work collaboratively with other nonprofits to improve services.


Community grants are awarded to organizations serving West Marin.

Applicants must:

  • Be a registered 501(c)(3) or 501(c)(4) organization or have a 501(c)(3) fiscal sponsor;
  • Be based in or provide services in West Marin, ideally for the last three years;
  • Have a commitment to racial justice, diversity, equity and inclusion.

Only one application may be submitted by an organization. Please note that organizations may receive more than one grant if they are acting as a fiscal sponsor for a successful applicant.


West Marin Fund does not fund the following:

  • Individuals;
  • Colleges and universities;
  • Debt reduction;
  • Disaster relief outside the Bay Area;
  • Government agencies;
  • Organizations that have not submitted a report that is due on a previous grant
  • Political organizations and political purposes. This includes lobbying activities, to influence legislators or voters on specific, pending legislation; and participation or intervention in an election campaign that expresses a view in support or opposition to a candidate for public office;
  • Programs or equipment that were paid for prior to the grant proposal period
  • Religious organizations unless it is for activities that benefit the entire community, regardless of religious affiliation.

Grant Range

The minimum amount awarded is $2,000 and the maximum is $7,500. Please give careful thought to your organization’s ability to carry out the proposed activities should you not receive the full amount requested.


A template is provided to show the projected expenses and income for the proposed activities to be funded. Costs for trainings and a contribution towards salaries of staff who are directly involved in implementing the proposed activities may be included. Once the Subtotal of Proposed Activities Expenses has been calculated, an amount not exceeding 10% of the subtotal may be included for general administration costs or the fiscal sponsorship fee.

Duration & Reporting

If awarded a grant, your organization will be expected to use the funds within ten months. Final reports will be due in the eleventh month, with a clear accounting of expenditures and a short description of use, impact and lessons learned.

Application Process

New & Improved System

West Marin Fund has upgraded its grantmaking system so that applicants can have their own online account with a login and password, and where organizational information, applications, and supporting documents are stored for reference and future grant applications

Submitting Your Application

  • Create an online account
  • Review the detailed application guidelines
  • Complete the application form
  • Upload the required supporting documents

Selection Process & Schedule

All applications are reviewed and assessed by the Grants Review Committee of West Marin Fund according to selection criteria for its Community Grants program. The Committee makes grant recommendations to the Board of Directors of West Marin Fund who make their final decisions taking into account the availability of funds at the time.
If you have any questions regarding your application and the required supporting documents, please contact us well in advance of the deadline so that we can provide you with the support you need to submit your application on time.