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Community Challenge Grant Program (CCG)

Grants to San Francisco, California Nonprofits
for Neighborhood Beautification Projects

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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City and County of San Francisco - City Administrator’s Office - Community Challenge Grant Program (CCG)

Deadline Date:

10/16/19 5:00 PM


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Grants starting at $15,000 to San Francisco, California nonprofit organizations for neighborhood beautification projects. Projects should directly engage businesses and local residents in creating gardens, green spaces, gathering places, mini-parks, public art, and other neighborhood amenities featuring and applying ecologically friendly amenities and practices.

The program provides public funding for community-led transformation efforts that enhance beauty, facilitate community participation and stewardship, and strengthen neighborhoods.

Eligible Project Categories:
- Green spaces: Including gardens, sidewalk gardens, median enhancements, tree planting, decorative planters/boxes, landscaping, and urban agriculture
- Gathering places: Mini-parks, parklets, plazas, dog parks, open space and trail restoration
- Public art: Sculptures, mosaics, murals, and new media
- Neighborhood amenities: Community lighting, seating/benches, bike racks, neighborhood branding, community activation initiatives

Note: The examples provided above are generally representative of eligible project categories/examples, but not an exhaustive list.

Projects must demonstrate minimum requirements, and should:
- Emphasize self-help and involve neighborhood residents in the planning and implementation of the project.
-​ Meet all of the application requirements, including developing work plans, budgets, maintenance plans, obtain insurance, permit approvals (where required), and be prepared to comply with grant administration protocols defined in the guidelines.
- Have a 5-year maintenance plan detailing ongoing maintenance after project completion, if a public art project, the maintenance plan must extend to 10-years. Please identify an individual or entity responsible for maintenance as well as the source of funds to support proposed maintenance plan.
- ​Include installation of interpretive signs explaining the function of the project to the public and acknowledging CCG, including the CCG logo. Signs may include other project partners and funders, as desired.
- Costs associated with such signage may be included in the grant request.

Budget items eligible for funding:
- General Labor/Professional services costs. Please note that certain types of professional services are eligible on a limited basis as described in the “limitations” section below.
- Equipment, supplies and materials, as they directly relate to the proposed project.
- Community outreach materials, as they directly relate to the proposed project.
- Permit fees, as they directly relate to the proposed project.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 146238

Estimated Size of Grant:

The CCG awards a minimum grant of $15,000 up to a maximum grant of $175,000.

Term of Contract:

Duration/Contract Period: 12 Months: On a limited basis, the CCG Program Director may authorize a project duration that exceeds 12 months based on the project complexity and scope. The duration is established at the beginning of the grant contract and represents the period of time that an awardee has to complete the project.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

CCG provides grants to the following types of organizations:
1. Nonprofit organizations
2. Community or neighborhood groups
3. San Francisco businesses or merchant associations
4. San Francisco based Community Benefit Districts (CBDs)
5. Schools

Grantees must meet vendor requirements of the City and County of San Francisco: CCG funds are issued to San Francisco vendor approved nonprofit organizations with a 501 (c) 3 status. Local community groups, businesses, or schools performing a community project in their neighborhood must have a nonprofit fiscal sponsor.

Budget items eligible for funding with limitations:
- Design costs are not to exceed 20% of the total project budget.
- Administrative or Indirect Costs are not to exceed 10% of the requested project budget. Any organization submitting for reimbursement of administrative or indirect costs must be prepared to document and justify the services provided to the CCG Program Director.
- Project Management costs are not to exceed 20% of the requested project budget.
- Fiscal Sponsor fee is not to exceed 15% of the requested project budget.
- Permanent interpretive signage costs are not to exceed $1,000 of the requested project budget.

Budget items not eligible for funding:
- Food and beverages.
- Travel expenses.
- Celebrations
- Expenses incurred prior to the execution of the grant contract.
- Previous financial commitments made as part of an organization’s regular operation or as part of another program. Grant awards may not be used to fund ongoing or existing programs, unless there is a clear, documented expansion of services

Projects must not:
- Duplicate or replace funding for an existing private or public program
- Duplicate existing maintenance programs
- Conflict with existing City policies

Pre-Application Information:

2019 Grant Cycle:
- Cycle Opens: September 11, 2019
- Application Deadline: October 16, 2019, 5:00PM
- Advisory Committee Review Period: November to December 2019
- Award Announcements: February 2020

The CCG offers grants through one annual cycle. In the Fall, grant applications are released for the cycle. Typically, the grant cycle allows five weeks for the completion and submission of applications. Awards are announced in January of the following year.

Match Requirement: 35% for all projects. All grantees must provide a match of cash, volunteer labor (valued at $25/hr), donated materials and/or supplies, or services.

At the time of submission, public art projects must include (1) sketches of the proposed design and/or a written description of the theme, (2) artist(s) identified to complete the project, including a biography and history of their past work, and (3) a project site.

Projects requiring City permits must speak with the appropriate department staff to discuss the process and timeline required to obtain them. Please discuss how permitting will affect implementation of the project in the design section of the proposal narrative. This should occur prior to submitting an application.

This is a cost-reimbursement contract and funded entities must expend dollars, document their expenditures, and submit invoices for reimbursement.

Cycle Dates:

Guidelines and Applications:

Grant Programs:

Grant Information:


Contact Information:

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

Applications will be available in Summer 2019.

Lanita Henriquez, Director
Phone: (415) 554-4830
Fax: (415) 554-4849

Community Challenge Grant Program
Division of the City Administrator's Office
City Hall, Room 362
One Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place
San Francisco, CA 94102

URL for Full Text (RFP):

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USA: California: The City and County of San Francisco

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