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Grants to USA Nonprofits to Promote Financial and Banking Literacy for Vulnerable Populations

Consumer Financial Education Fund

GrantWatch ID# 166138
Agency: Foundation

Funding Source
Rose Foundation
Array ( )

Geographic Focus

Important Dates
LOI Date: 08/24/18
Deadline: 12/14/18 5:00 PM PDT

Grant Description
Grants to USA nonprofit organizations to provide consumer education or information, or financial literacy or education. Applicants must submit an LOI before submitting a full application. A special emphasis is placed on issues related to large financial institutions, basic banking, access to financial services, retail banking accounts, and underbanked or vulnerable populations.

Within the overall framework of educating consumers about financial issues or increasing consumer financial literacy, eligible projects must specifically relate to teaching consumers how to manage their finances to avoid overdraft fees.

Eligible Projects:
It is anticipated that eligible projects may encompass, but not be limited to, the following issues or focus areas:

Financial Education and Training including:
-Education and outreach activities that teach adults and children about financial issues and increasing their financial literacy, including community workshops, classroom presentations, trainings, conferences, and webinars, especially including information about overdraft fees and how to avoid them. Educational programs covering the following topics are encouraged:

-Fees and choices related to debit cards and pre-paid debit cards that lead to high interest rates;
-Education for consumers to not opt-in to overdraft protection when fees will be charged;
-The dangers of high-cost, short-term credit such as payday loans and how to avoid this type of borrowing.
- Educational projects should seek to adapt and utilize existing curricula. Applicants proposing to create entirely new curricula should be prepared to fully justify why existing financial literacy curricula is insufficient.

Financial Education and Advocacy designed to promote fair and equitable banking practices and to protect vulnerable populations from predatory banking. Financial advocacy projects should have clear objectives and include immediate outcomes which are achievable within the grant period. Projects relating to current issues such as the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program are encouraged.

Proposals could include:
-Policy and/or regulatory development and implementation, including related research;
-Cost of relevant experts;
-Events for legislators and other policy-makers to help them understand pertinent issues;
-Legal advocacy including case development and litigation.

Preference will be given to:
-Applicants who can clearly define their desired outcomes and express quantitative and qualitative metrics that will measure progress made towards those outcomes during the grant period;
-Projects that specifically serve vulnerable and/or underbanked populations including low income communities of color, students, veterans, and non-English speakers conducted by organizations that have a demonstrated track record of working with these communities;
-Projects designed to affect long-term consumer behavior by changing habits and teaching clients how to independently maintain good financial standing for future years; o Projects that disseminate information in multiple languages;
-Projects with a clear strategy to reduce predatory lending and to promote fair banking practices.


  • Others (see text field entitled "Additional Eligibility Criteria" for clarification)

Additional Criteria for Eligibility
Eligibility Criteria

Applicants must meet all of the following criteria in order to qualify for this fund:
-The applicant must demonstrate expertise in consumer financial education.
-The applicant must be a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, or be fiscally sponsored by a 501(c)(3) nonprofit. Nonprofit colleges, universities, university clinics, and graduate programs are eligible to apply, but university overhead is limited to 5% of grant award.
-An applicant’s principal place of business must be located in the United States. Eligible projects may be national in scope, developing materials for distribution nationally; or they may be regional or statewide projects conducted only by organizations located in the following states:
- California
- Connecticut
- Delaware
- Washington, D.C.
- Florida
- Illinois
- Maryland
- New Jersey
- New York
- Oregon
- Pennsylvania
- Virginia
- Washington

Prohibited Activities

Projects may not use this grant funding to engage in the following activities:
-Electioneering or other political or religious activities prohibited by IRS 501(c)(3) regulations.
-Activities primarily targeted or conducted outside of the United States.

Pre-Application Information

The current grant cycle is a two-step process. Any group that meets the eligibility criteria is welcome to submit a letter of inquiry. The deadline to submit a letter of inquiry is August 24, 2018 at 5:00 pm PDT. Because of limited funding, only a select number of applicants will be invited to submit a full grant proposal after submitting a letter of inquiry. Invitations to apply and decline notifications will be sent out by October 31, 2018. If a full proposal is invited, it will be due December 14, 2018 at 5:00 pm PDT. Final funding decisions will be announced in February, 2019.

Submit your Letter of Inquiry to Rose Foundation’s online grant application portal at:

Applicants may or may not be contacted for follow up information or interviews. Final funding decisions will be announced in February, 2019.

Estimated Size of Grant
The maximum allowable total request is $75,000 even for multi-year proposals

Term of Contract
It is anticipated that most proposals will be for 12-month grant periods; however, multi-year proposals are encouraged where appropriate. Applicants are encouraged to seek funding for projects starting January 1, 2019.

Contact Information
Tim Little, Executive Director
510-658-0702 x301

Anya Diamond, Program Officer
(510) 658-0702

Rose Foundation
1970 Broadway, Suite 600
Oakland, CA 94612-2218

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