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Sam L. Cohen Foundation Grant

Grants to Maine Nonprofits and Agencies for Civic, Health,
Human Services, Education, Arts, and Jewish Cultural Programs

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Sam L. Cohen Foundation

LOI Date:


Deadline Date:



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Grants of up to $50,000 to Maine nonprofits, faith-based organizations, and government agencies in eligible areas for programs that benefit local residents. Applicants must submit a letter of inquiry prior to applying. Funding is intended to support programs in the Foundation's five focus areas: civic and community, arts and culture, education, health and human services, and Jewish culture and traditions. Eligible applicants must be located in and/or provide programs or services that directly impact people in Cumberland and/or York counties.

Priority will be given to organizations and projects that:

  • Support the underserved, disadvantaged, or those who do not have the resources to provide opportunities for themselves
  • Make a significant difference in people's lives, assuring them a fulfilling and productive future
  • Promote human rights and understanding among peoples, address racial and religious discrimination and hatred, and foster peace through education
  • Demonstrate a broad base of community support, and/or
  • Use collaboration as a means to leverage resources.

The Foundation will support new programs, ongoing programs, and capital improvements, as well as general operations to organizations whose overall mission aligns with the Foundation's giving priorities.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 177066

Estimated Size of Grant:

The Sam L. Cohen Foundation will consider responsive grant requests for amounts up to $50,000; however, the average grant size awarded is less than $15,000.

Term of Contract:

In general, the Foundation will not support projects requiring a multi-year commitment.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

- Must be a 501(c)(3) nonprofit; using a fiscal agent that is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit; a church, synagogue, temple or mosque; or a political subdivision of the State of Maine that is exempt from federal tax
- Must be located in and/or provide programs or services with direct impact on people in Cumberland and/or York Counties, Maine
- Must have submitted the final grant report if you received a grant previously from the Foundation
- Must not have received a grant from the Foundation in the previous calendar year

In general, the Foundation will not support annual fund appeals, endowments, and projects requiring a multi-year commitment.

Typically grants will not be awarded to the same organization in two consecutive years.

Unique situations:
- The directors retain the right to consider compelling ideas that do not fall within the stated guidelines.
- In addition to responding to requests that meet Foundation priorities, the directors and staff will be proactive in identifying areas in which the Foundation can make a significant positive difference. In this situation, and at the invitation of the directors, applications for larger than average amounts will be considered.

Pre-Application Information:


Spring Cycle:
- Initial Inquiry: December 1 - January 19
- Full Application: March 1
- Decision: June

Fall Cycle:
- Initial Inquiry: June 1 - July 15
- Full Application: September 1
- Decision: November

Deadlines that fall on a weekend or holiday are extended to the next work day.

As you develop your letter of inquiry, we encourage you to contact Foundation staff to discuss your program or organization and the Foundation’s giving priorities.

All applicants need to submit an Initial Inquiry, even those who have received a grant previously. Responses will be sent within two weeks after the Initial Inquiry deadlines. If you do not receive a response, it is your responsibility to follow up with the Foundation.

If your proposed request aligns with the Foundation's grant-making interests, you will be invited to submit a Full Application through the online system.

Application Process and Deadlines:

Online Application Instructions:

Grant Evaluation Criteria:

Program Areas:

Arts and Culture:

Civic and Community:


Health and Human Services:

Jewish Culture and Traditions:

Contact Information:

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

Register and submit the LOI online:

Staff Contact Information:

John Shoos, Executive Director
Phone: 207-871-5600, ext. 2

Dana Baldwin, Program Officer
Phone: 207-871-5600, ext. 1

Gloria Nicholson, Grants and Finance Administrator
Phone: 207-871-5600, ext. 0

Sam. L. Cohen Foundation
22 Free Street, Suite 401
Portland, Maine 04101

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Maine: Cumberland and/or York counties

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