Since our founding in 1921, The Dayton Foundation and its fund holders have awarded more than $1 billion in grants to nonprofits to support education, arts and culture, animal welfare, housing and more. While the majority of grants are advised by our fund holders, our competitive grants are made possible thanks to donors who have placed little to no restrictions on their funds, allowing the Foundation’s volunteer Grants Committee and Governing Board to determine where need is greatest.
These small quick grants are awarded quarterly for special projects, program expansions, capital improvements or capacity building. This competitive grant opportunity is designed to fund
qualified grant requests from $500 to $7,500. All applicants will be notified within two weeks of the deadline as to whether or not a grant has been awarded.
The application is available on the Foundation’s new grants application portal. A courtesy worksheet can be downloaded to help you collect your answers before entering them in the online portal.
Deadlines: March 1, 2024, June 3, 2024, September 2, 2024, December 2, 2024, by 4:00 p.m.
Discretionary Grants are awarded twice a year to a full spectrum of tax-exempt organizations to help launch new projects not addressed by existing organizations or to support special efforts of already-established not-for-profit organizations in the Dayton Region.
Letter of Intent Deadline: July 5, 2024
Full Grant Application Deadlines (Invitation Only): March 15, 2024, September 27, 2024, by 4:00 p.m.
Foundation Funds that Accept Grant Applications
There are a number of Foundation funds that carry out their own grant programs with separate grant application guidelines and deadlines.
Dedicated to the memory of Hermene Louise Schwarz, a pioneer in performing arts education in Dayton, this fund provides grants for performing arts organizations to enrich the community through dance, theater and music. Priority will be given to organizations that show collaboration with other groups, projects that utilize residencies or guest artists and performances that engage the community.
Basic Human Needs Grants
Basic Human Needs Grants help your organization help people in need of basic necessities in Greater Dayton. Grants are awarded to 501(c)(3) tax-exempt nonprofit organizations that focus on basic human needs, such as food, shelter, healthcare and clothing. The organizations we consider for support are located primarily in Montgomery, Miami (south), Greene, Preble and Warren (north) counties.
The application is available on the Foundation's new grants application portal. A courtesy worksheet can be downloaded to help you collect your answers before entering them in the online portal.
Deadlines: February 16, 2024, May 10, 2024, August 9, 2024, and November 8, 2024, by 4:00 p.m.
Brighter Tomorrow Foundation Fund
Montgomery County, Ohio, organizations (501(c)(3) charities, local governmental agencies and academic institutions) that serve individuals with developmental disabilities are invited to apply for this once-yearly grants program. The grant application period extends over two months, from mid-September until the first Friday in November. Grant decisions are made in January, and grantees are notified at that time.
A fund family of The Dayton Foundation, The Centerville-Washington Foundation accepts and reviews grant requests for programs that meet the following criteria: to launch new projects that represent a unique and unduplicated opportunity for the community, to support established organizations for special purposes and to generate matching funds from government or nonprofit organizations that benefit the citizens of Centerville and Washington Township.
Deadline: March 1, 2024
Community Foundation for Kettering Fund
Projects and activities supported by the Community Foundation for Kettering must benefit residents of the Greater Kettering area, with applicants recognized as tax-exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. The foundation generally makes grants to support start-up or new projects currently not addressed by existing organizations, or special efforts by existing organizations to undertake unique activities or projects.
Deadline: April 15, 2024, and October 15, 2024
Dayton Youth Enrichment Fund Grant
This fund was established to help broaden perspectives, pique curiosity and inspire a love of learning and exploration by providing support for nonprofit organizations to help youth participate in summer enrichment programs or outside summer camps. Enrichment programs and summer camps should give students the chance to grow in leadership, music, arts, STEM and a variety of academic and technology skills.
Applications are accepted by invitation only.
Dayton Legal Heritage Foundation Fund
This fund serves to benefit Greater Dayton citizens by awarding grants to nonprofit organizations and governmental agencies that run programs to improve the practice of law and elevate the awareness of legal and justice systems.
Rolling Application Deadline: Now accepting applications
Della B. Gardner Fund
Grants support the care and aid of deserving seniors in need residing within the City of Middletown. The Dayton Foundation will issue an annual Request for Proposals to senior-serving organizations in the Middletown area.
Greater Dayton Conservation Fund
This fund supports conservation initiatives and programs that work to preserve Greater Dayton’s natural resources. The Fund’s Advisory Committee has launched a strategic initiative to pursue new funding opportunities. In future grant cycles, the Greater Dayton Conservation Fund distribution will be used to identify new, untapped sources of revenue to achieve positive outcomes for the collaborative work in our community.
Rolling Application Deadline
Robert and Helen Harmony Fund for Needy Children
The Harmonys established their fund in 1993 to provide quality camping opportunities for children in Montgomery, Greene, Clark, Darke, Miami, Preble, Butler or Warren counties in Ohio, who otherwise would not be able to attend camp because of financial need. In order to receive Harmony campership funds, a camp must be a resident camp and offer a broad range of nature and recreational programs (as opposed to nature camps only) with properly trained staff. Medical/specialty camps offering residential programs for children also are encouraged to apply. Eligible camps must be accredited for the camping season by the American Camping Association or by a comparable accrediting agency. Awards are made annually.
Fund for Higher Education
Former NCR chairman Robert S. Oelman established The Fund for Higher Education in 1988 to permanently endow funding for projects that will improve the quality of and access to higher education in the Dayton Region. The Dayton Foundation issues an RFP to area colleges and universities for projects that will increase the range of higher educational services to students or that offer the promise of substantially improving the quality of these services.
Rike Family Scholarship Fund
In 1987, the Rike family established this fund to award grants to one or more private K-8 schools in Greater Dayton. Awards are made on a biennial basis and cover a period of two school years. The size of awards varies from $1,500 to $1,900 annually. Applicants must be a private school, accredited by the State of Ohio and offer a general course of studies within Montgomery or Greene counties.
A fund of The Dayton Foundation, the Vandalia-Butler Foundation awards grants to nonprofit organizations that benefit citizens in the Vandalia-Butler community. To be eligible for a grant, an organization must be recognized as tax-exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, be nondiscriminatory and address needs that are not met fully by existing organizational or community resources.
Rolling Application Deadline
VISIONS: An Eye for the Future Fund
Teachers or staff members in the Vandalia-Butler City School system may submit grant requests for a project or program that benefits students in a particular school or classroom. No request is too large or too small. The committee reviews grant requests in September, January and April, with funds disbursed shortly afterward.
Deadline: The application period runs each year from October 1 to December 15.