Community Grants Program
The Community Grants Program aims to improve equity in the Authority's grantmaking. It provides an alternative pathway for community-based organizations in economically disadvantaged communities to getting a grant, with a shorter application form and increased staff support.
To learn more about the Authority's efforts to ensure the benefits of Measure AA funding are conveyed to the Bay's economically disadvantaged communities (EDCs), please visit our Equity and Environmental Justice webpage.
How do you apply?
DOWNLOAD OUR APPLICATION FORM. Please submit an application to firstname.lastname@example.org. The application asks for basic information about the proposed project, including a project description, schedule, and budget.
Staff will schedule a consultation with you to talk through the project, and a review team will assess whether the project is a good fit for the Community Grants Program. If it is, staff will work closely with you to develop a staff recommendation that can be brought to the Board for funding authorization.
If you have questions about Community Grants, please email email@example.com.
Photos and Records Submitted with Application
All information that you submit is a public record subject to disclosure under the Public Records Act.
Please only submit photos, maps, or other materials with this application in which either (1) you own the copyright, trademark, or have some other ownership rights in the materials, or (2) you have permission to use and have the authority to grant the Authority the permission to use such materials for non-commercial purposes. When submitting photos, maps, or other materials, please confirm in writing via the grant application or some other method that you are granting the Authority the unlimited right to use such materials for non-commercial purposes. Please indicate if photos, maps, or other material submitted with this application require crediting when reused by the Conservancy - you should indicate this on each document.
If you provide any photographs of individuals to the Authority, you should ensure that the individuals (or the guardians of individuals under the age of 18) were informed that photographs may be taken and used for any non-commercial purpose.
Who should apply?
Community-based organizations in EDCs are eligible to apply for Community Grants. See our Guidance on identifying EDCs and EDC maps, on our Grants page under Additional Resources.
What kinds of projects will be funded?
The Authority funds the following types of projects:
- A habitat project that aims to restore, protect, or enhance tidal wetlands, managed ponds, or natural habitats on the shoreline in the San Francisco Bay Area;
- A flood management project that is part of a habitat project;
- A public access project that will provide or improve access or recreational amenities that are part of a habitat project.
For the Community Grants Program, we are looking for projects that meet the requirements above and do the following:
- Support community visioning aimed at developing conceptual plans for shoreline habitat projects.
- Implement small shoreline habitat projects with strong community benefits, e.g., community engagement, education, workforce development, career development, leadership development, and community celebrations.
- Train community leaders to develop proposals, apply for funds, and implement small shoreline habitat projects in partnership with shoreline landowners, such as planting native plants, removing invasive plants, and cleaning up trash.
- Empower communities to have a voice in the design and implementation of large shoreline restoration projects by helping them gain knowledge of shoreline issues and build relationships with restoration-focused organizations and agencies.
Examples of projects funded:
- Marin City Urban Wetland Community Visioning Project
- Candlestick Point Stewardship Project
- Bay Restoration: Youth Engagement and Service Learning in East Oakland
- Baylands Habitat Restoration and Community Engagement in East Palo Alto
- San Leandro (Lisjan) Creek Community Project
What is the maximum grant amount?
The maximum amount that the Authority will provide for a Community Grant is $200,000. Matching funds are not required. If you need a larger amount, you are welcome to apply for a grant in the competitive grant round.
When should you apply and when will the money be available?
- You can apply at any time. We are accepting and reviewing applications on a rolling basis.
- It usually takes about two months from the time the board approves the project to getting a grant agreement in place, and another month or so for the grantee to provide all the necessary documents to allow work to begin.
How do you find project partners?
Community-based organizations often want or need to partner with a restoration-focused agency to obtain permission to work on a specific shoreline property, or to gain access to technical expertise in habitat restoration. SF Bay Restoration Authority staff facilitate building partnerships by hosting networking sessions and providing a spreadsheet where groups can share information about what kinds of partners they are seeking. Networking sessions are held at least once year, most recently from September 23 through October 2, 2022 (see our presentation slides here). Sign up here to learn about future sessions.
Why was this program created?
The Authority created this program as part of its effort to improve equity in its grantmaking. It provides an alternative pathway to getting a grant, with a shorter application form and increased staff support. Reports on the program's funding to-date can be found on the Equity and Environmental Justice webpage.
The Measure AA 2021 Grants Webinar was hosted in July 2023. A recording can be found here.