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Rosin Fund

Grants to New York City Nonprofits for Projects to
Support Arts, Environment, and Community Development

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Scherman Foundation - Katharine S. and Axel G. Rosin Fund

LOI Date:


Deadline Date:

03/11/19 - Deadline for grants in the areas of Arts and Strengthening New York Communities


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Grants to New York City nonprofits for short-term, high-impact, and innovative projects in support of the arts, environment, and community development. Environmental programs may be focused domestically or internationally. An LOI must be submitted prior to a final proposal.

Rosin Fund – Arts
The Rosin Fund’s Arts Program will support a limited number of innovative, short-term and high-impact projects that support and strengthen the city’s performing, visual, and literary arts fields. The Foundation has chosen to initially do this in collaboration with the City’s many excellent art service organizations (ASOs) that support the creative process, provide the infrastructure that sustains artistic life, and help artists develop skills necessary for their creative pursuits.

The Foundation will consider collaborative projects that include ASOs and other arts organizations. While presenting and producing organizations are not categorically excluded, the presenter must have, as a significant organizational goal, the development of, and service to, a defined artistic field. Further, those efforts must be the primary focus of the proposed project.

Proposed projects must articulate defined goals, achievable within three years, as well as proposed evaluation criteria. Proposals may include specific requests for funding of assessment and evaluation. Projects that offer leveraging opportunities from other funding sources are encouraged.

Rosin Fund – Strengthening NY Communities
To achieve a just and equitable New York City, the Rosin Fund’s Strengthening New York Communities (RF SNYC) Program is interested in bold projects that test new approaches and ideas. The Foundation understands that breakthroughs are not possible without risk and potential failure. Thus, the Rosin Fund will support a limited number of innovative, short-term, and high-impact projects that address the critical needs of low and moderate-income neighborhoods.

The Foundation recognizes that structural racism and other forms of discrimination are significant barriers that must be addressed. While the Foundation values multi-pronged approaches, it believes that organized and active neighborhood residents and people most directly impacted by injustice are in the best position to identify problems and solutions, and to create long-term social justice outcomes.

The RF SNYC will consider applications from projects exploring movement infrastructure needs that could include, but are not limited to, new approaches to sustainability challenges, cross-sector building needs, scalability, or infrastructure needs.

Proposed Projects must:
- Address a critical community need. Project issues to be addressed may include: protection of civil and human rights, affordable and safe housing, employment opportunities and workers’ rights, criminal/juvenile justice, gender justice, immigrant rights, sustainable community development, etc. Cross-sector approaches, especially those jointly addressing environmental and social justice goals, are encouraged.
- Present a new approach to the issues addressed, based either on changed political circumstances or an innovative strategy.
- Emphasize community organizing as a primary strategy within a multi-pronged advocacy effort.
- Articulate a project plan with defined and measurable goals, achievable within three years. Proposals may include specific requests for funding of assessment and evaluation.
- Have the infrastructure capacity to manage larger grants. In the case of projects proposed by a single entity, an annual organizational budget at or above $1 million is preferred. While no numeric limit exists in the case of collaborative campaigns, close attention will be paid to the size and capacity of the various partners and the collaborative itself.

Rosin Fund – Environment
The Rosin Fund’s Environment Program will fund a limited number of innovative, short-term, and high-impact projects that address critical environmental issues within the Program’s scope of interest. Target projects should demonstrate the potential to effect significant, transformative benefits both near-term and over time, within a project scope of one to three years and an overall budget in which the Fund’s grant plays a significant role. Proposals that reconceive environmental challenges as opportunities and present holistic, integrated solutions that address multiple problems will receive particular attention. Projects should offer measurable outcomes, preferably with the potential to multiply beneficial effects though scale and/or replication.

Projects may be focused internationally or domestically. Applicant organizations should demonstrate the ability to manage projects of the proposed size and complexity, as well as a commitment to the specific proposed project within any larger agenda. Proposals that seek to leverage Rosin Fund support with additional funds, as well as proposals that identify collaborative opportunities spanning multiple organizations, are welcome and encouraged.

The Foundation is interested in projects which cross its programmatic lines and, in particular, those that combine the Foundation’s environmental interests with the social justice goals of its Strengthening New York Communities program. As such, the Foundation welcomes projects addressing the environmental concerns of low-income communities and communities of color, whether locally, nationally, or internationally.

Topic Areas
Building on the values and strategies of the Foundation’s Core Environment Program, the Rosin Fund Environment Program will focus on three areas: Urban Sustainability, Green Economy/Green Jobs, and Sustainable Drinking Water. Each area is described briefly below.

Urban Sustainability
The Foundation will consider ground-breaking projects focused on new paradigms in sustainable urbanism including but not limited to: the redesign of the built environment, especially high rise commercial and residential structures, to improve the quality of life and reduce harmful environmental impacts; the improvement of mass transit, as well as the expansion of transit-focused residential development; development of green infrastructure, from stormwater management and drinking water systems to decentralized renewable electricity generation and green roofs; recycling and waste management; food quality and availability; urban agriculture; and open space development. Strategic approaches could include: advocacy and organizing; policy and regulatory and technical research and development; and public education.

Green Economy/Green Jobs
The RF Environmental program seeks projects that re-conceptualize the challenge to spur sustainable jobs, robust economic activity, and significant social equity benefits. Specific projects may include: creation of new capital vehicles that leverage both conventional and environmental value; the engagement of new partnerships between labor, business, anti-poverty groups, and environmental groups; creation of jobs and social benefits through innovative and scalable retrofits of residential and commercial buildings; or the promotion of green industry through policies and investments that drive the implementation of innovative renewable energy strategies and transportation systems.

Sustainable Drinking Water
The Foundation will consider breakthrough and replicable projects that seek to ensure that drinking water is clean and available, both domestically and globally. Areas of interest include but are not limited to: novel and improved water protection strategies and policies; efforts to create and deploy innovative new technologies; efforts to highlight corporate responsibility for water protection from a financially prudent, as well as a good citizenship, perspective; and the protection of water from extractive industries, including the growing threat of under-regulated hydraulic fracking. Strategies employed may include, but again are not limited to, demonstration projects, organizing and advocacy, policy and scientific research, public education, and media/communications, as well as unique approaches to catalyzing effective regulation and enforcement at the federal, state, and local levels.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 166500

Estimated Size of Grant:

Art and Environment Grants will range between $100,000 and $250,000 per year, with the possibility of larger grants for extraordinary opportunities.

Strengthening NY Communities Grants will range between $100,000 and $150,000 per year, with the possibility of larger grants up to $250,000 for extraordinary opportunities.

Term of Contract:

Grants cover a period of one to three years.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

All applicants must be exempt from income taxes under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.

Rosin Fund – Arts
The Foundation will consider applications from art service organizations (ASOs) defined by geography or by creative discipline, including organizations focused on more than one discipline.

Rosin Fund Arts Program will not fund:
- Individual productions
- Projects focused on arts education
- Projects outside New York City

Rosin Fund – Strengthening NY Communities
The RF SNYC will consider applications from:
- Neighborhood-based groups using community organizing and advocacy to pursue social and economic equity goals and to achieve systematic change.
- Research and policy reform organizations that are engaged in targeted advocacy efforts involving grassroots leaders and activists, genuinely integrating them into decision-making.
- A single community-based organization, or a collaborative campaign involving multiple partners, including policy, planning, legal, and research groups. This could also include organizational partners in other parts of the state that will have a direct impact in New York City.
- Direct service organizations that are seeking to use organizing and advocacy to leverage their service activities to create policy and systematic change.
- An organization needing early funding to launch a project that has the potential to leverage other funding sources, as well as projects that have current support.

RF SNYC will not fund:
- Direct service
- Research and publications not directly linked to policy outcomes
- Projects focused outside New York City

Pre-Application Information:

The Rosin Fund is now accepting letters of intent from a limited number of innovative and high-impact projects in the areas of Arts and Strengthening New York Communities for multi-year funding in 2019.

New requests for support from the Scherman Foundation’s Rosin Fund must be made by first submitting a Letter of Intent (LOI) through the Foundation’s online application system.

- January 9, 2019: Letters of Intent are due through the Foundation’s online application system
- February 4, 2019: Invitations for full proposals will be sent by the Foundation
- March 11, 2019: Full proposals due through the application system
- June 2019: Board consideration and approval of final project

How to apply:

Rosin Fund - Arts:

Rosin Fund - Strengthening NY Communities:

Rosin Fund - Environment:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Submit an LOI:

Naiche Parker, Grants Manager

The Scherman Foundation
16 East 52nd Street, Suite 601
New York, NY 10022
tel 212-832-3086 | fax 212-838-0154

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: New York City;   New York