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Grants to California Nonprofits, Schools, and Agencies for Programs that Benefit Local Communities

Share the Spirit Grant


GrantWatch ID#

Funding Source
East Bay Times and Bay Area News Group
Array ( )

Geographic Focus
USA: California: Alameda and Contra Costa Counties

Important Dates
Deadline: 08/15/22 12:00 PM Save

Grant Description
Grants of up to $25,000 to California nonprofit organizations, schools, and public agencies for programs that benefit local communities in eligible regions. Funding is intended to improve the winter season for the most underprivileged residents of the counties through holiday programs and outreach. To be considered, requests must include a story topic for publication in Bay Area News Group media. Strong consideration will be given to applications with willing interview subject(s). Eligible programs benefit the residents of Alameda and Contra Costa Counties.

The Share the Spirit campaign’s purpose is to 1) illuminate the needs of residents in the local community; 2) generate interest and awareness of nonprofit service agencies and encourage civic philanthropy; 3) provide funding for programs that serve East Bay children, individuals, and families.

The best topics are timely and relevant. For 2022, Share the Spirit will consider all submissions and is looking for stories that touch on current issues and events, including but not limited to: systemic racism - improving inclusiveness, deconstructing traditional systems to improve equity, etc.; COVID19 - impact, recovery, changes to/new services offered, public safety; houselessness and the issues for those in the area who are unsheltered; community voices - adding to advocacy, education, collaboration on current issues, celebrating diversity and equity; climate change.

Share the Spirit will consider grant requests for:

  • Existing programs, expansion of programs, and projects that are time-limited in nature
  • New programs/organizations that demonstrate clear and relevant goals.
  • Programs and educational activities that seek to build capacity. 

The Share the Spirit program is interested in funding initiatives/organizations that:

  •  Provide excellent story topics to highlight good work of individuals and/or organizations, with special consideration given to submissions with specific program participants willing to be interviewed by Bay Area News Group/East Bay Times.
  • Expose readers/influencers to community needs and specific populations
  • Represent diverse populations and geographic areas within Alameda or Contra Costa Counties.
  • Create meaningful impact for residents of Alameda and Contra Costa Counties, and reflect well on the nonprofit sector. 
  • Address priority areas including systemic racism, climate change, unsheltered residents, food insecurity, community activism

Beginning prior to Thanksgiving Day and continuing through early January each year, the Bay Area News Group publishes a series of Share the Spirit stories illustrating specific community needs and offering readers a direct opportunity to make donations. Readers’ donations allow Share the Spirit to grant funds to support many varying community needs like assisting veterans with financial and job assistance programs, sleeping bags and showers for people who are unsheltered, holiday gifts for children in foster care, and much more in Alameda and Contra Costa Counties. A good story should be compelling, unique, emotional, and relatable. For samples of previous stories visit story archives:

For information about interviews and extended media, see:


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

Additional Eligibility Criteria
Organizations eligible for grant funding are 501(C)3 nonprofits, schools, and other public entities located in or serving the communities in Alameda and Contra Costa Counties.

Grantees will represent a wide diversity of programs, populations, and geographic areas with particular emphasis on youth, families and seniors across both counties served.

For additional information on eligibility requirements, see:

The Share the Spirit program generally WILL NOT consider grant requests for:
- Programs/projects outside the priority areas or taking place outside the Alameda and Contra Costa County area.
- Grants to individuals, businesses, or private foundations.
- Endowment, capital campaigns, or support for fundraising events.

Pre-Application Information
The application portal opens on August 1, 2022, at 8:00 AM. The portal closes on August 15, 2022, at 12:00 PM. There is a cap of 80 applications accepted. The portal will close sooner if the capacity is reached before August 15.

Calendar/Grant Due Dates:
- August 1, 2022, 8:00 am: Grant Application Portal opens.
- August 15, 2022- 12:00 p.m.(noon): Grant Application Portal closes
- September 2022: Grantees notified
- October 2022: Grantees selected for story publication; those selected will be contacted by Bay Area News Group staff. ALL grantees must have an organization contact available throughout the month of October to coordinate with journalists.
- November 2022 – January 2023: Share the Spirit features published in East Bay Times
- Funds distributed to Grantees (PLEASE NOTE - this is changed from past years when funds were distributed in fall.)
- June 9, 2023 by noon – Post-Grant Final Reports, completed online, are due.

Not all grant recipients will be selected for a story due to resource limitations, but all applicants must be willing and able to provide story topics. If selected for a story, the representative from your organization provided in your application will be contacted and a prompt, courteous response is necessary. Time is required to coordinate for the interviewee, reporter, and photographer to meet the publication date, so a delayed response can mean that the News Group selects a different organization to be profiled.

Most activity for stories – reporter contact, interviews of clients, photography, etc. - will take place in late September, October, and early November, even if a story may not be published until December or January. Grantees must have an organization contact available throughout the month of October to coordinate with journalists.

One application per organization is advised. The application has space for at least 2 story topics.


Number of Grants
Approximately 30- 40 grants will be awarded.

Estimated Size of Grant
$3,000 - $25,000

Term of Contract
Most activity for stories - reporter contact, interviews of clients, photography, etc. - will take place in late September, October, and early November.

Contact Information
Apply Online (from August 1):

Submit a question online here:

Share the Spirit
POB 3491
Walnut Creek, CA 94598

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