Community Action Grant Guidelines

Application checklistNote new grant application deadlines
What we do not fund
Deadlines & Timeline
Specific Guidelines for Washington, DC area grants
Specific Guidelines for United Kingdom grants

The Gannett Foundation supports local organizations in communities served by Gannett Co., Inc. 

Our community action grant priorities include education and neighborhood improvement, economic development, youth development, community problem-solving, assistance to disadvantaged people, environmental conservation and cultural enrichment.

Our average grant amount is in the $1,000 to $5,000 range.
Is your non-profit organization located in a Gannett community?  If your non-profit organization is located in the Washington, DC Metropolitan Area, go directly to the DC Area Fact Sheet.

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Deadlines & Timeline (for all locations except Washington, DC metro area)

We consider grant applications twice a year.  Please submit your proposal to the contact at the daily newspaper or television station in your area. Applications should be POSTMARKED NO LATER THAN February 28th or August 29th. Some locations have earlier deadlines, and they are listed in the Grant Contact list. Click here to see if there are specific guidelines for your area. (We do not accept proposals via email, messenger or hand delivery.)

A committee of employees reviews all proposals within one month after each deadline.  Applicants are notified of final decisions about 90–120 days after deadlines.  Please no phone or email inquiries. 

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What Community Action Grants do not fund

Like many donors, we receive many more requests than we can fund. As a result, grants will not be considered for the following purposes:

  • individuals
  • private foundations
  • organizations not determined by the IRS to be a tax-exempt public charity under §501(c)(3)
  • organizations classified by the IRS as 509(a)(3)
  • national or regional organizations unless their programs address specific local community needs
  • programs or initiatives where the primary purpose is the promotion of religious doctrine or tenets
  • elementary or secondary schools (except to provide special initiatives or programs not provided by regular school budgets)
  • political action or legislative advocacy groups
  • endowment funds
  • multiple-year pledge campaigns
  • medical or research organizations, including organizations funding single disease research
  • organizations located in or benefiting nations other than the US and its territories
  • fraternal groups, athletic teams, bands, volunteer firefighters or similar groups

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Grant Application Checklist:
Send one copy of the application form and your proposal to the local newspaper publisher or TV station general manager. Do not send a proposal to the foundation offices in McLean, VA, unless it addresses local needs in the Washington, DC metropolitan area. 

Your grant proposal must contain the following information:

  1. completed Gannett Foundation Grant Application Form 
  2. IRS letter of determination for 501(c)3 tax exemption
  3. one-page project budget, a one-page summary organizational budget
  4. Project proposal of no more than three pages that includes:
    • needs statement
      • objectives of the project to be funded
      • whether the project is new or ongoing
      • constituency to be served
      • community and volunteer involvement
    • sustainability statement 
      • your organization's qualifications to carry out the project
      • how the project will be evaluated
      • plans for continued funding of the project, if applicable
      • list of other funding sources, committed and applied for
  5. pertinent recent publications may also be included

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