We are improving our processes for making and managing grants and other investments, and we will have a standard process and set of scalable tools that are used by all foundation teams throughout 2013. We are phasing in this transition across the foundation, so some teams are still using existing processes and tools, with variability to be expected, as described below. Foundation staff will provide grantseekers guidance on the appropriate process and tools to use.
Q. How do I apply for a grant from the foundation?
A. We do not make grants outside our funding priorities. In general, we directly invite proposals by directly contacting organizations. We do occasionally award grants through published RFPs or letters of inquiry. View a list of current RFP and LOI opportunities.
Only the Global Health and Pacific Northwest programs currently accept open letters of inquiry (LOI - see glossary of terms). Global Health currently welcomes LOIs for a range of initiatives. Pacific Northwest currently welcomes LOIs focused on Family and Community Roles in Supporting Student Success.
Q. I have materials I want to submit along with my request for funding. How do I send them?
A. Please submit only the requested forms. We are not able to accept samples, prototypes, or other supplementary materials that accompany requests for funding, and these items will not be returned.
Q. My funding request does not fall under any of your programs. How do I submit it?
A. We do not make grants outside our funding priorities.
Q. I am an individual seeking financial assistance. Am I eligible for a grant?
A. In keeping with our charter, we do not provide funding to individuals.
Q. I am raising money for a cause. Am I eligible for a grant?
A. The foundation makes grants to organizations directly rather than through individual fundraising activities; therefore, we are unable to fund your effort.
Q. How are the foundation and Microsoft related?
A. The Microsoft Corporation and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation are separate organizations and are not related. They each have independent approaches to charitable giving. To learn about Microsoft’s corporate philanthropy initiatives, please visit the Microsoft Community Engagement and Investment web site.