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Mayer and Morris Kaplan Family Foundation Grant

Grants to Chicago, Illinois and Los Angeles, California Nonprofits
to Promote Post-Secondary and Career Success

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Mayer and Morris Kaplan Family Foundation

LOI Date:


Deadline Date:

02/01/19 - Deadline for Chicago grants; For Los Angeles grants, the deadline is 02/01/19.


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Grants generally ranging from $40,000 to $60,000 to Chicago, Illinois and Los Angeles, California nonprofits, public schools, school districts, and IHEs to promote access to college, post-secondary success, and career opportunities. LOIs are due by June 1, 2018 for Chicago applicants. The Foundation funds direct services and programs in these interest areas, and also considers funding applied research or evaluation intended to develop or improve evidence-based programming.

College access

Getting students to college:
- Prepare students to apply and enroll in college
- Ensure that students are supported during the summer before the start of college
- Follow and support students through at least the first year of college

Postsecondary Opportunities and Success

College Completion – Getting students through college
- Focus on freshman to sophomore year retention
- Connect students with college/university resources
- Provide supports needed for college completion, including both Associate’s and Bachelor’s degrees

Career Success – Making successful transitions from college to career
- Provide supports needed to build students’ ability to access and attain a quality first job
- Connect employers and education institutions

Progressive Pathways – Progressively building toward college and career success

Provide guidance and support for students who:
- Do not immediately pursue a college degree through one compact 2-year or 4-year experience
- Progressively build toward a college degree
- Move in, out, and in between higher education institutions
- Alternate between education, training, and workforce participation
Connect students to vocational, training, and apprenticeship opportunities
Assist students in earning stackable credentials with economic value

The Foundation’s focus on these initiatives within Education is based on a commitment to increase opportunity and life success for students–specifically, supporting postsecondary opportunities for ethnic minority, first-generation students from low-income communities.

An applicant need not address all these initiatives, although more competitive organizations tend to address a wider spectrum of student success (e.g., both preparing students for the transition from high school to college and supporting college completion). The Foundation may not make grants in all these initiatives at any one time, but is interested in exploring and learning more about these areas.

Please note that the application procedures and deadlines do not apply to environment grantmaking. If your organization aligns with the Foundation’s environmental priorities, please contact staff to discuss eligibility and application procedures.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 181469

Estimated Size of Grant:

Education grants generally range from $40,000-$60,000.

Term of Contract:

Please apply for a one-year grant unless you are specifically asked to apply for multi-year funding.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

The Foundation's grantmaking will support the efforts of nonprofit organizations; individual public schools in Chicago and Los Angeles; CPS and LAUSD school districts; institutions of higher education; or any of the above working together in collaboration. In some cases, organizations that do not have 501(c)(3) status may be able to apply using a fiscal sponsor.

Only organizations located in the city of Chicago or the city of Los Angeles, and/or organizations working in or partnering with Chicago Public Schools or Los Angeles Unified School District are funded. If your organization is located outside the Chicago or LA city limits, but provides substantial programming to Chicago or LA youth, please contact staff to discuss eligibility.

The Foundation will not fund:
- Any organization that accepts funds for Abstinence-only education.
- Any organization that has been designated a 509(a)(2) Type III by the IRS.
- Any organization in which funds will be used for the study and/or propagation of a particular religious faith.
- Individuals.
- Films or recordings.
- Organizations operating exclusively outside of the United States.
- Meetings or isolated events.
- Purchase of tickets to testimonial events or advertising in yearbooks and dinner programs.
- Any grantee organization more than once during the calendar year.

Pre-Application Information:

In order to submit a Letter of Inquiry, all new potential applicants must first speak with staff to determine fit with the Foundation’s portfolio. If your organization is then invited to submit a Letter of Inquiry, staff will provide instructions.

Timeline (Chicago applicants):
- May 1, 2018: Letter of Inquiry (LOI) instructions will be provided to organizations invited to submit.
- June 1, 2018: Due date for LOI
- June 29, 2018: Date by which organizations will be notified of status of LOI; those invited to submit full proposals will receive proposal instructions via email.
- July 31, 2018: Due date for full proposals

Timeline (Los Angeles applicants):
- October 1, 2018 Letter of Inquiry (LOI) instructions will be provided to organizations invited to submit. (Please contact staff to determine eligibility/fit.)
- November 1, 2018: Due date for LOI
- December 31, 2018: Date by which organizations will be notified of status of LOI; those invited to submit full proposals will receive proposal instructions via email.
- February 1, 2019: Due date for full proposals

Application instructions and deadlines for current grantees may be found here:


Proposal procedures:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Shira Bernstein, Program Officer
Phone: 847-681-5056

Dinaz Mansuri, Executive Director
Phone: 847-681-5059

Sarah Thomas, Environment Program Consultant

The Mayer and Morris Kaplan Family Foundation
1780 Green Bay Road, Suite 205
Highland Park, IL 60035
Phone: 847-926-8350
Fax: 847-681-1363

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: California: Los Angeles;   Illinois: Chicago