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Our grantmaking process is based on deep listening and learning. We scan the landscape to identify organizations we feel may be aligned with our mission and determine if they might be a fit for funding or a thought partner in our work. We also reach out to community leaders to hear about the highest needs and biggest challenges within a community and balance that information with relevant national and local research.


Organizations are invited to apply for funding on an invitation-only basis. At this time, we do not accept unsolicited grant proposals. As we learn more and our organizational capacity grows, we may decide to implement an open application process. In the meantime, we rely on our network of grantees, public and private funding partners, and colleagues in the field to help inform our work.

We look for 501(c)3 and public agencies that serve families with children age 0-5 in one or more of our giving areas. Our funding focuses on ten counties around the greater Bay Area. Eligibility is based on mission alignment and grants are evaluated on a case by case basis through due diligence, site visits, and conversation.

If you have ideas or inquiries that you believe may align with Sunlight Giving’s priorities, we invite you to send us a brief email (100 words or less). While we commit to reviewing all inquiries, given our small team and the volume of requests, we can only reply to those we intend to explore further.

process & timeline

The foundation meets five times a year to make grant decisions, usually in March, May, July, September, and November. The average grant process takes between two to three months from start to finish. We strive to make our process straightforward and simple for invited organizations. In most cases, a typical process is as follows:

  • A program officer will reach out to a prospective grantee for an introductory conversation and/or request a site visit

  • The program officer extends an invitation to apply for funding for a particular grants meeting date or informs the prospective grantee of the decision not to extend an invitation at this time

  • Prospective grantees complete a simple online application, usually with a deadline at least one month prior to a grant meeting date

  • Shortly after the grants meeting, the program officer will notify prospective grantees of an award or declination

  • Approximately one month after the grants meeting and informal notification, grantees will receive formal notification and grant funds