Grantseekers FAQ

Who is eligible for a grant from the Foundation?

The McCune Charitable Foundation accepts online applications for community-based projects in the state of New Mexico related to our nine Foundation Priorities. The Foundation makes grants for general operating expenses to qualified 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations, federally recognized Indian tribes, public schools, and governmental agencies. No grants are made to individuals.

What is the dollar amount of the average grant award?

The Foundation now has a tiered structure for grant awards, please refer to the “Apply” page on the website that outlines the categories and the range of awards that are available for funding.

What is the range of grant awards?

Grants generally run between $10,000 and $100,000. See the “Grantmaking Overview” document for more information regarding the range and eligibility requirements for each category. Discretionary grants are up to a maximum of $5,000 per year; however, due to budget considerations, the average grant size is generally closer to $1,000.

What kinds of grants are available?

The Foundation awards smaller discretionary grants on a rolling basis and larger grant awards during the open application process. In rare instances, the Foundation will invite an applicant from an organization to submit an application for a specific purpose. Generally, all open application grants are awarded for General Operating Support.

Beginning in 2018, in partnership with other funders, the Foundation introduced a new grant structure, the NM Collaborative Zone Grant.  The Zone Grant awards support collaborative projects with planning, technical support and implementation funding.  The Request for Proposal process occurs in a timeframe separate from that of the open application cycle.  Currently, for an overview, please refer to the "Zone Grant" page on our website.  

How can I apply for a discretionary grant?

A brief request stating the name of the organization, purpose of the grant, the requested amount (up to $5,000) and the expected outcome should be emailed to Ernesto Torres, the Grants Manager, at discretionary@nmmccune.org. Note that discretionary grants are typically awarded in the range of $1,000 to $1,500 and larger discretionary grants are awarded to work more highly aligned with the Foundation's Priority areas.

When can I apply for a larger grant?

The open application cycle for 2019 funding has passed. However, the McCune Charitable Foundation will be accepting online applications for 2020 funding consideration during the period of August 15 through September 13, 2019. The deadline for all applications is September 13th at 5:00 p.m. Mountain Time.  Due to limited staff, we may not be able to help with technical problems the last few days of the cycle, so it’s best to apply early. Note that the open application cycle is only 30 days. Please mark your calendars!

Can I apply for more than one grant per year?

The Foundation generally awards only one grant per year to an organization.

How long is the grant period?

Most grants are awarded for a one-year period. So, if the grant is awarded in late February, the grant funds should be spent out by the end of the following February. The award letter will explicitly state the start and end date of the grant period.

I have heard that the Foundation has outlined Priorities and Leverage Points. How can I learn more about the Foundation Priorities and whether or not my work fits within the Priorities?

The Foundation has a Strategic Plan in which Foundation Priorities and Leverage Points have been identified. You can get more information about the Strategic Plan, Foundation Priorities and Leverage Points including the opportunity to view recent webinars by clicking on the “Apply” page on the website: http://www.nmmccune.org/apply.

If my project does not align with the Foundation Priorities, can I still apply?

Applications outside the Foundation Priorities will be considered, but preference will be given to those applications that are most competitive and in alignment with one or more Foundation Priorities.

Are the Foundation Priorities ranked in order of importance?

The priorities do not have a ranking based on order of importance. All priorities are of equal importance and will be given equal consideration.

Will the Foundation’s Grant Budget for the year be split up into 9 parts to accommodate each Foundation Priority?

Funding allocations will be based on the merit of the applications received. Funding will not be divided equally among the different Priorities.

Can multiple organizations apply for a grant together?

Multiple organizations can choose to submit a joint application rather than applying individually. However, one organization will need to serve as the “lead” organization to fill out the application.

The Foundation has indicated that collaboration among groups is highly desirable. What kind of support is available for bringing groups together and getting them to work toward a common outcome?

Discretionary and open cycle applications are welcomed for this purpose. However, due to our small staff, we cannot provide staff support or direct technical assistance for these efforts. Check with your local Community Foundation for support they may offer.

Will Social Services applications still be considered?

Applicants for direct social services will still be considered; however, applications that outline a holistic or family-centered approach that align with the Foundation Priorities will be given preference.

Is multi-year funding available?

Generally, grants are awarded for a one-year period.

Why are there different application forms?

All grants will be awarded for General Operating Support. However, we have different applications forms for the different categories and depending on whether or not the organization will be applying through a fiscal sponsor. So, please choose the form for the correct category and whether or not you will be using a fiscal sponsor.

What if I have a fiscal sponsor?

If you have a fiscal sponsor, you will need to coordinate selecting and filling out the relevant application form with a representative from the sponsoring organization. 

I cannot remember my password. Is it possible to retrieve it through your system?

The sign-in page will ask you to enter your email address and password. (Please note that the email address and password must be the same used when you submitted your application.) If you cannot remember your password, click on "forgot your password? Click here" and the system will send your password to your email address. When the application cycle opens and becomes active, complete instructions on how to submit applications will be posted on the “Apply” tab of the website.

I would like to submit additional materials with my application. How can I do that?

We are unable to accept supplementary materials. Please submit only what is required in the application form, thus providing the requested information.

Can I edit my application once I have submitted it to the Foundation?

Once an applicant has hit the “submit” button, the application cannot be edited. However, you can still get into your account and view your application after it has been submitted by logging in with your email and password.

When will I hear whether or not I have received a grant from my application submitted during the open application cycle?

A letter will be sent to each applicant after the Board of Directors’ first meeting of the year (typically in late-February to mid-March). If you do not receive a letter by mid- to late-March, please email Ernesto Torres (Ernesto@nmmccune.org) with your inquiry.

If my application is not funded, how can I receive feedback on my application?

Due to limited staff and the high volume of applications, it is not feasible for the Foundation staff to discuss with all applicants the reasons for declining a request or to provide individual critiques of proposals declined. Because the Foundation has limited financial resources, we are able to fund only a small percentage of qualified applicants. This means that many excellent projects, even ones that fall within the Foundation Priorities, may not be funded. Please understand that the decline of a proposal does not mean that the project lacks merit.

I would like to make an appointment with the Foundation staff. What is the best way to go about doing this?

Due to limited staff resources and the large volume of requests we receive, the Foundation conducts very few pre-proposal meetings. However, all meeting requests should be routed to Catherine Kosak at cathy@nmmccune.org These are reviewed on a regular basis by program staff.