Annual Responsive Grants Frequently Asked Questions

Here are answers to frequently asked questions for our Annual Responsive Grants process.

What are the areas you award Annual Responsive Grants?

Annual Responsive grants are awarded in the areas listed below. Please note the funding priorities for each area.

Animal Services
Programs that:

  • Improve the health and wellness of animals
  • Educate our community about animal care
  • Provide spay/neuter and/or adoption services

Arts & Culture

Programs that:

  • Promote accessibility to the arts
  • Encourage broad participation from all parts of our community
  • Provide arts education & outreach
Children & Youth

Programs that:

  • Enable children and families to lead safe and productive lives

Programs and services that:

  • Improve the safety and welfare of vulnerable and under-served populations
  • Increase chances for individual/family success and self-sufficiency

Medicine & Healthcare
Programs and services that:

  • Promote healthy lifestyles, with an emphasis on reducing obesity and diabetes
  • Are preventive in nature or educate the community in prevention
  • Increase access to comprehensive healthcare, including dental, vision and mental services


Programs that:

  • Enhance the quality of life for seniors

In addition to the funding priorities for each category, we are also interested in awarding grants to programs that help achieve targets in specific vision elements in the SA2020 Plan. The SA2020 vision elements that align with areas we fund are

  • Arts and Culture
  • Community Safety
  • Downtown Development
  • Economic Competitiveness
  • Family Well-being
  • Health and Fitness
  • Neighborhoods and Growth Management

What are the deadlines?

Cycle one:
Children and Youth and Medicine and Healthcare
The application is currently closed.

Cycle two:
Animal Services, Arts and Culture and Seniors and Community-at-Large
The application will be available Monday, June 11, with a deadline of Friday, July 20 at 11:50 p.m.

You must select which cycle you will submit your application in for the Annual Responsive Grant process.

Whether you are approved or denied for any Annual Responsive grant, you are eligible to apply for any and all of the following grants processes: Biomedical Research, High School Completion, Strengthening Nonprofits.

What is the criteria to apply?

Those eligible to submit applications include nonprofit organizations exempt from federal income tax under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, schools, churches or governmental bodies that serve Bexar and the following surrounding counties: Frio, Atascosa, Karnes, Wilson, Guadalupe, Gonzales, Comal, Blanco, Kendall, Gillespie, Kerr, Bandera and Medina.

What do you not fund?

  • Endowments
  • Debt reduction
  • Operating deficits
  • Indirect costs
  • Scholarships for colleges and universities
  • Individuals
  • First 75% of capital campaign goals
  • Projects in individual churches, parishes, or congregations that do not benefit the community-at-large
  • Political activities, organizations, or lobbying efforts intended to influence legislation

How are applications submitted to the Area Foundation?

All applications and required attachments must be submitted electronically via our online grants center. No faxes or hard copies will be accepted.

Do we need to create an account to access and complete the grant application?

Yes. All grant seekers must create an online account to access the online application. You will receive an email confirming you have created an account. 

What does a complete grant application include?

In addition to answering all of the required questions in the General Organization, General Project Information, Narrative, Board of Directors and Staff Information sections of the application, a complete Annual Responsive grant application must include the following:

  • Program Budget
  • Financial Summary
  • Audited Financial Statements - if unavailable, send Balance Sheet and Statement of Revenues/Expenses for most recent fiscal year. Do not submit IRS Form 990.

Is there a minimum or maximum amount of funding that can be requested?

No. Organizations should ask for the amount needed to fund the program, but applicants should keep in mind that the entire funding pool for the 2015 Annual Responsive Grants process was just over $2 million. View a list of the 2015 Annual Responsive grants awards.

Will we be able to save the application prior to submitting?

Yes. You may save your application and make changes prior to submitting. Please note that in the online grants center, working on a form without saving does not count as activity. To avoid being logged, out applicants should use the Save as Draft button a minimum of every 30 minutes. An applicant will be automatically logged out of the system after 90 minutes of inactivity.

How will we know if the Area Foundation received our application?

When you have submitted your application, you will receive an automated response stating the Area Foundation has received your application. If you do not receive a response immediately after submitting, please contact Lydia Saldaña at 210.228.3753.

Can an organization submit more than one Annual Responsive grant each year?

No. Each organization may submit only one Annual Responsive Grant application per calendar year with the following exceptions:

  • Colleges and universities may submit multiple applications, but may not submit the same application in more than one program area.
  • An organization serving as the fiscal agent for an application from an existing partnership or collaboration may also submit an application for its own organization. In such a situation, each of these applicants must demonstrate that the organizations involved have a history of partnering or collaborating with one another.

Why do you need an applicant’s Financial Statements and Financial Summary?

The Board and staff of the San Antonio Area Foundation serve as stewards of our generous donors’ funds and, therefore, must have confidence that the investments we make in organizations are sound. The Financial Statements and Financial Summary (part of the application form) are reviewed to determine the financial stability of each organization.

If an organization does not have Audited Financial Statements, what do we do?

If your organization does not have Audited Financial Statements, submit a Balance Sheet and Statement of Revenues/Expenses for the most recent fiscal year. Both statements are required. Do not submit IRS Form 990.

If an organization does not have three years of Financial Summary information, what do we do?

If an organization does not have three years of budget information, provide all available financial history. You will complete the Financial Summary for the year(s) the organization has been in operation.

Does the application need to be signed?

Yes, the application must be signed by two different people. Typing the name of the Head of Organization and Board Chair/President on the last page of the application acts as a signature and acknowledges that both have reviewed the application and all required attachments. If there is no paid staff, two different board officers must sign.

How is funding determined?

Applications are evaluated by Community Advisory Committees, which are diverse groups of community volunteers with expertise and knowledge of the community’s needs, nonprofit management and sound business practices. Each member reviews and scores each application using this matrix.

Does the Area Foundation provide feedback once funding decisions are made?

Once funding decisions are made, we can share the strengths and weakness of the application based on the reviewer’s scores.

Does the Area Foundation award both full and partial grants?

If I apply in the Annual Responsive process, can I apply for other grants?

Yes. Applying for or receiving a grant from one of our grant processes does not exclude you from applying for any and all of the following grants processes: Biomedical Research, High School Completion, Strengthening Nonprofits.

Is it possible to speak to someone before submitting an application?

If you have any questions, please contact Lydia Saldaña, Program Officer – Annual Responsive Grants, at 210.228.3753.

When are grants awarded?

Funding for cycle one grants will be announced May 2017, and funding for cycle two grants will be announced December 2017.

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San Antonio, TX 78215

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