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Strategic Alliance Partnership

Grants to Toledo Area, Ohio Nonprofits for
Mergers and Collaborations to Improve Efficiency

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Toledo Community Foundation and Stranahan Foundation

LOI Date:


Deadline Date:

10/20/18 11:59 PM


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Grants to Toledo Area, Ohio nonprofit organizations to support the formation and exploration of alliances, mergers, and collaborations. LOIs are due February 15. Applicants are strongly encouraged to discuss requests with program staff prior to applying. The purpose of this program is to enable Toledo-area nonprofits to achieve more effective and efficient use of financial and human resources, gain greater long-term financial stability and enhance social impact.

About the Strategic Alliance Partnership:

-Administrative Consolidation: Typically aimed at increasing efficiency, includes formal agreement for contracting, exchanging or sharing services. Organizations involved in administrative consolidations share decision-making powers over a number of areas including office space, staffing, etc.

-Corporate Merger/Acquisition: Includes full integration of programmatic assets and administrative functions. However, because nonprofit funding can be so closely tied to an organization's name and original mission, many nonprofits "merge administratively" but retain both names and brand identities.

-Collaboration: Includes information sharing, program coordination, and joint planning. Organizations involved in collaborations remain independent with full decision-making power over their own organizations but often form an umbrella organization to consolidate resources and create better opportunities for funding.

-Joint Programming can also be defined as a Strategic Alliance Partnership. However, this alliance should be thought of as a restructuring where organizations share the launch and management (and thereby enjoy significant cost savings) of one or more large programs or services that is lacking in the community. Organizations involved in joint programming share decision-making powers for the program or service while maintaining independence in managing their own organizations. Often joint programming leads to closer types of alliances. In order to be competitive with this type of grant proposal, significant cost savings and community impact must be demonstrated.


Effective nonprofit organizations are vital to the healthy development and quality of life in the community. Challenges and opportunities for growth are diverse, complex and often best addressed through multi-disciplinary and multi-organizational approaches.

The Strategic Alliance Partnership was created to support the exploration and formation of collaborations that would enable Toledo area nonprofits to achieve more efficient use of financial and human resources. The Strategic Alliance Partnership encourages community-level systems thinking to strengthen nonprofit capacity and improve service delivery. Since the process of forming partnerships can be complicated, the Strategic Alliance Partnership will make funds available for non-recurring costs associated with feasibility studies, professional or technical assistance fees, as well as staff and board training. Qualified applicant organizations must have a demonstrated track record in providing quality services, board and staff support from all participating organizations for the alliance and the organizational capacity to carry out the proposed project successfully.

Goals of Strategic Alliance Partnership funding:
-To create economies of scale among nonprofits, resulting in cost savings and/or service enhancements (e.g. shared administrative services, shared staff to serve common constituencies, costs related to mergers).
-To strengthen infrastructure, management capacity and/or service delivery systems by supporting alliances among nonprofit organizations.
-To encourage collaborative partnerships that employ comprehensive strategies to strengthen community systems (such as improved education, employment, housing and/or health).

Previously funded grant proposals included requests for:
-Consultants and expert advice on mergers and/or consolidations of two or more organizations.
-Consultation and implementation for new and improved service delivery systems.
-Information technology assistance to consolidate “back office” operations (e.g. financial systems,
-Assistance with creation of shared benefit packages, policies, training and other human resources costs.
-Expertise creating coordinated communication systems and advocacy strategies.
-Purchase, installation and training of automated systems for use by multiple partners.
-Planning and implementation of shared staffing.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 147520

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Grants are made to Toledo Area nonprofits.

The following activities are not eligible for support through this initiative:
-Projects designed to replace staff lines in individual organizations undergoing funding cuts.
-Projects designed to strengthen the management capacity of individual organizations in isolation.
-Funding for start-up programs for individual or partnering organizations.
-Grant funds may not be used to cover project expenses incurred prior to the Foundation’s receipt of the signed and dated grant agreement.

Pre-Application Information:

The Strategic Alliance Partnership employs a two-step application process. Step one is the submission of a letter of inquiry. Step two is submission of the full proposal. Full proposals are by invitation only following review of the letters of inquiry.

Both letters of inquiry and full proposals must be submitted through the Toledo Community Foundation’s online application process. Letters of inquiry and full proposals must be submitted by 11:59 PM of the application deadline in order to be considered for funding.

Full proposals are reviewed by a steering committee comprised of representatives from the Stranahan Foundation and Toledo Community Foundation. Applicants and identified organizational partners may be asked to submit additional information or meet with Foundation staff during the grant review process.

The Strategic Alliance Partnership strongly encourages pre-application meetings or phone conferences to discuss potential requests for funding.

-Letters of Inquiry: February 15 and September 15
-Full Proposals: March 20 and October 20

More information about the Strategic Alliance Partnership may be found here:

Contact Information:

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

Apply Online:

Heather L. Bradley, Director
(419) 241-9513

The Center for Nonprofit Resources
300 Madison Avenue, Suite 1300
Toledo, OH 43604

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Ohio: Toledo Area