Equity Action Grants
Equity Action distributes approximately $60,000 each year through two types of grants.
Requests for up to $2,500 in funding may be submitted and are reviewed on a rolling basis to support short-term projects or one-time activities. Organizations can receive one small grant award per year. In general, the timeframe from submission of your application to funding decision will be six to ten weeks. Although applications for the small grant program are accepted on an ongoing basis, these grants are awarded as funds are available. Small grant applicants may want to consider submitting their small grant application by the April deadline for consideration within the larger grant pool.
Project and capacity building grants
Requests for between $2,500 and $10,000 may be submitted on an annual basis, and are due by midnight (EST) on April 13, 2023. Please note that no technical assistance regarding application submission will be available after 5 p.m. (EST). In general, the timeframe from submission of your application to funding decision will be six to ten weeks. Funding request should be for activities that will commence in late June 2023 or later, as notification to applicants will occur in late June.
Equity Action project and capacity building grants are awarded annually to support:
- Projects that meet the needs of the LGBTQ communities in Rhode Island
- Board development, strategic planning, program development, nonprofit business development, fundraising, program evaluation, or other activities that build the capacity of organizations that play a vital and unique role in the LGBTQ communities
Organizations can receive one project or capacity building grant award from this program per year.
Find out if your organization is eligible.
All agencies and associations proposing to serve the needs of Rhode Island’s LGBTQ communities are encouraged to apply, whether or not the agency is LGBTQ-focused. We strongly encourage applications from all-volunteer and grassroots organizations, and we acknowledge that many may not have grantwriting experience.
Equity Action funds a variety of initiatives including, but not limited to:
- Increasing advocacy capacity to address policy issues that affect the LGBTQ community (statewide or at the local level)
- Developing skills and processes to build effective partnerships, coalitions, and alliances to increase program operation and effectiveness
- Providing community education
All applicants must:
- Have a board-approved policy regarding staff (volunteer or paid) employment, the election of a governing board, and provision of services that mandates non-discrimination on the basis of race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, disability, or national origin. Please read the Equity Action Grant Applicant Non-Discrimination Policy Requirement, FAQ.
- Be incorporated as 501(c) nonprofit organizations or be sponsored by an umbrella 501(c) organization. Units of local or state government are also eligible grant recipients. Groups that have not yet applied for or received a determination of their nonprofit status may work through a fiscal sponsor.
Equity Action will not make grants to:
- Organizations that discriminate on the basis of age, disability, ethnic origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, race, or religion
- Fraternal organizations, unless in support of a specific program open to or benefitting the entire community
- Fundraising events such as annual campaigns, walk-a-thons, tournaments, fashion shows, auctions, or dinners
- Organizations with religious affiliations, unless the program is open to the entire community without regard to religious beliefs
- Organizations and programs designed to elect candidates to public office
- Organizations located outside Rhode Island unless for a specific program benefitting the residents of and conducted within Rhode Island
- Pay off past debts and obligations
- Endowment funds
- Academic scholarships, fellowships, and travel grants
- Capital support, unless it is limited to equipment needs where there is a demonstrated programmatic benefit
- Program or organizational start-up funding, unless a funding plan is in place and sustainability beyond the one-year grant period is likely
A complete application package includes:
- A small grant application or a project/capacity building grant application, both of which should be submitted through our online system;
- A project budget, also submitted through our online system;
- A project narrative, found within the application;
- A copy of your organization's non-discrimination policy;
- A scope of work (this applies only to organizations requesting funding for consultant services); and
- If your project involves lobbying, please indicate the anticipated amounts to be spent on direct and/or grassroots lobbying in your application. For more information on lobbying and advocacy, we encourage you to consult with the Bolder Advocacy initiative of the Alliance for Justice.
To complete an application that is already in progress, and to submit, please click here.