What matters to your organization?
We want to hear your ideas. Call us and we will help guide your request.
The Otsego Community Foundation manages over 80 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. The Community Fund and the Dr. Patrick J. McNamara Fund 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.
Community Grant Program
The Otsego Community Foundation is proud to administer the Community Grant Program a unique collaborative effort made possible by local funders to increase the effectiveness of grantmaking; growing the capacity of local nonprofits. Each spring applicants complete one online application, which is reviewed by multiple funders. Additionally, each applicant has the opportunity to do a brief presentation to share their story and answer funders’ questions.
Kiwanis Club of Gaylord
Munson Healthcare Otsego Memorial Hospital
Otsego County United Way
Otsego Wildlife Legacy Society
Rotary Club of Gaylord
“One of the things I like about the Community Granting Program is that it allows all of us to be more efficient with our time so we can spend more time “doing” in our community, instead of sitting in multiple meetings. I also like that I’m able to learn about so many of the resources and programs available in our county that I wouldn’t normally hear about!”
How to Apply for a Grant
Community Grant Program
1. Review Grant Making Guidelines
Funding partners are particularly interested in supporting:
- Proposals that solve critical local problems and address critical local needs.
- Proposals for programs or projects not adequately being served by existing community resources.
- Proposals which provide leverage for generating other funds and community resources.
- Proposals which facilitate cooperation and collaboration between organizations.
- Proposals that increase the capacity of local organizations.
- Government Units
- Charitable Organizations with their 501 C3 status.
2. Register or Login as a grant admin
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.
If this is your first time completing a grant application please register by emailing Karin Beyer, at [email protected] and include your name and the name of the organization on whose behalf you will be completing the application. Please allow 48 hours for a response during regular business hours.
If you have applied on behalf of the same organization in the past and know your login information, log in now.
Forgotten login information
If you have forgotten your login information, please contact Karin at [email protected]. Please allow 48 hours for a response during regular business hours.
Returning representative with different organization
If you have completed an online application in the past but are now representing a different organization, please email Karin at [email protected] and include the name of the new organization as well as the name of the organization you originally represented.
3. Start an Application
Now that you have registered and are related to an organization you can log in at any time to start and complete the application process. Past applicants have reported that the average time to complete the application is two hours. The application has five sections including:
- Organization Information*
- Organization Background*
- Proposal Background
- Proposal Budget
*Generated from your organization snapshot which you can log in and update at any time of the year.
Once you complete all five sections you will be asked to sign and submit the application. Then click on application history to upload supplemental documents and complete the application process.
4. Upload Supplemental
Before the application process is complete please upload the following documents.
- Letter of determination (501 C3 only). If you have submitted this document in previous years, we have this on file and you do not need to resubmit. • Annual tax return (990, 990 N or 990 EZ)
- Bids for your project (if applicable)
- Letters of support for your organization or project (if applicable). This is a great opportunity to highlight collaboration. A list of current board members.
- Any other support documents that help tell your story.
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.
Use the grant for the purpose stated in your grant application
Our expectations of your project start with the grant proposal that you submitted. What we read about in your grant proposal is what we are expecting to happen unless we hear otherwise from you. We do understand that things can change and some flexibility is important. However, we ask that you please talk to us prior to making any major changes to a project we have funded. In many cases it takes just a simple phone call.
Maintain your status as a tax exempt organization
We serve the community through nonprofit organizations. If your tax exempt status changes or is revoked during the course of our grant, please let us know.
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.
More Grant Opportunities
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. 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.
Grant Seekers Info Session
4:00 pm at the Otsego County Library
Application Live online
4:30 pm at the Otsego County Library
Giving Together Celebration
9:00 am at the Headwaters Room inside Jay’s Sporting Goods
Get In Touch
Location: 316 W Main Street, Gaylord, MI 49735
Mailing Address: PO Box 344, Gaylord, MI 49734
Telephone: (989) 731-0597
Email: [email protected]
Hours: T-TH: 8 a.m. - 3 p.m. (M & F by appt.)