The Otsego Community Foundation manages over 90 charitable funds established by generous individuals, businesses and families that want to give back to Otsego County. From each fund, grants are distributed back to the community based on the charitable intention of the fund. Some funds are designated for a specific cause or organization such as the Otsego County Historical Society or Little League, others known as Field of Interest Funds, target a specific area of the community such as youth, educators, homelessness or cancer. Funds for the Community are undesignated funds designed to support multiple local charities. In order to effectively distribute grants from field of interest funds and undesignated funds an application is required. See community grant program to learn more.

Important Dates for Community Grant Program

October 24


December 12

 Grant Seekers Info Session

4:00 pm  in person upstairs at the Otsego County Library



Community Grant Program application live online



Community Grant Program application deadline

5 & 6


Q & A Sessions for Grant Applicants

May 22


Giving Together Celebration

Gaylord E-Free Church 9:00am


General Grant Application

We realize that a need or opportunity may arise for your organization outside of the Community Grant Program.  If you find yourself in this situation, please give us a call and discuss with our team. Funding opportunities are available and made on a case-by-case basis. With years of experience connecting people who care to the causes that matter the OCF staff may be able to assist.  Each year grant dollars go unused and although we can’t guarantee funding we can assure you it is worth a call. 

Community Grant Program

Since 2015, The Otsego Community Foundation has administered the Community Grant Program, a collaborative effort of local funders that increases the effectiveness of grantmaking and grows the capacity of local nonprofits. Collectively, we can make more of an impact on projects and programs. As the administrator of this program, the OCF will serve as your contact through the grant-seeking process. This program addresses the limited capacity of organizations to apply to multiple funding sources. Each winter, applicants complete one online application, which is reviewed by multiple funders, each with their own funding priorities and focus areas. The Community Grant Program is a one-stop grantmaking source for nonprofit organizations serving Otsego County.


Our Partners

We are proud to partner with the following organizations for the Community Grant Program. Each funding partner makes its own decisions about which projects to support based on available funds and funding priorities. Please see the Funding Partners Fact Sheet.

  • Kiwanis Club of Gaylord
  • United Way of Otsego County
  • Munson Healthcare Otsego Memorial Hospital Foundation
  • Otsego Wildlife Legacy Society
  • Rotary Club of Gaylord
  • Meemic Insurance/The Drzewiecki Agency
  • BCBSM Foundation

Who is Eligible?

  • 501 (c) (3) organizations
  • Schools
  • Government Units that serve the residents of Otsego County

Each funding partner has certain areas of interest. However, all funding partners are particularly interested in supporting applications that:

  • Focus on projects that pilot, scale, accelerate, or fill significant gaps.
  • Build capacity and support the incredible work of our nonprofits.
  • Fully fund grants and champion projects actively addressing identified local needs.
  • Support multi-year grants to promote effective planning and programming.
  • Leverage greater funds from outside our community through matching grants.

The Community Grant Program does NOT fund the following:

  • Capital campaigns
  • Membership campaigns
  • Event sponsorships
  • Retroactive funding
  • Debt retirement
  • Grants to individuals
  • Grants for medical, scientific, or academic research
  • Grants that promote political and religious ideologies and doctrines

Together, we granted over $160,000 to meet needs and advance opportunities in our community 2023. The grants awarded by this program ranged from $1200 to $19,000, with an average award of $4368.

Types of Grants

The Community Grant Program offers four types of grants for Otsego County nonprofits: Seed, Expansion, Capacity, and Sustaining.  Please refer to the definitions below to determine which fits the needs of your organization.


  • Expansion Grant – This grant funds an increase in the size or scope of an existing program.
  • Capacity Grant – This grant is an investment that strengthens nonprofit performance or outcomes such as new strategies, improved processes/efficiencies, or staff development.
  • Sustaining Grant – This grant funds an established program or project that isn’t altering its size or scope.
  • Seed Grant – This type of grant funds a new concept or pilot program.

How To Apply For A Grant  

Register or Login as a Grant Administrator

Whether you have experience with our online application or this is your first time, our staff is here to help you along the way. We want to hear what matters to you.

New Grant Administrator

If this is your first time completing a grant application please register by clicking HERE. If you have any questions please feel free to email Karin Beyer, at karin@otsegofoundation.org. Please allow 48 hours for a response during regular business hours.

Forgotten Login Information

If you have forgotten your login information, please contact Karin at karin@otsegofoundation.org. Please allow 48 hours for a response during regular business hours. 

Returning Grant Administrator with a New Organization 

If you have completed an online application in the past but are now representing a different organization, please email Karin at karin@otsegofoundation.org and include the name of the new organization as well as the name of the organization you originally represented. 

Returning Grant Administrator

If you have applied on behalf of the same organization in the past and know your login information, log in now. You are ready to start your application! 

Grant Requirements

                                           Congratulations on your recent grant award!

The award letter you received outlines the dollar amount granted, the fund(s) from which those dollars came, as well as the conditions of the grant, including:


Publicize your grant

You may prepare and submit a press release to local media regarding your project and the grant; if you have a newsletter that could be a good outlet as well. Please continue to credit “the fund of the OCF” in printed materials and news stories as a supporter of the project. In order to assist both the experienced and first-time grant recipient, we have produced some suggestions in Tips for Publicizing Your Grant.

Invite us to see it in action

Whether your project is complete or in process members of our team including staff, volunteers and donors would love to see your good work in action.  Please contact Karin to schedule this. 


Submit a Final Report form

The Final report form available here will provide guidance and if you have any questions please email  karin@otsegofoundation.org .Your feedback is essential to our work.

Thank you for your partnership!


2024 Giving Together Publication

The Community Grant Program is a collaborative effort made possible by local funding partners, including the Kiwanis Club of Gaylord, Otsego Community Foundation, Otsego Wildlife Legacy Society, Munson Healthcare Otsego Memorial Hospital, Otsego County United Way, Drzewiecki Agency, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan Foundation, and Rotary Club of Gaylord.

This unique program, administered by the Otsego Community Foundation, allows nonprofits to complete one grant application, which is reviewed and considered by all funding partners. See the 2024 Giving Together Publication below. 


Grants Awarded


Current Assets

Get In Touch

Location: 316 W Main Street, Gaylord, MI 49735

Mailing Address: PO Box 344, Gaylord, MI 49734

Telephone: (989) 731-0597

Email: info@otsegofoundation.org

Hours: T-TH: 8 a.m. – 3 p.m. (M & F by appt.)

What matters to your organization?
We want to hear your ideas. Call us and we will help guide your request.