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Special Initiatives Grant

Grants to Massachusetts Nonprofits to Increase
Healthcare Access for Low-Income Groups

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation

Deadline Date:



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Grants of up to $50,000 to Massachusetts nonprofit organizations to increase healthcare access for vulnerable and low-income populations in the state. Preference will be given to programs that provide cost savings for healthcare consumers. The program’s potential for replication or scaling will be taken into consideration.

Projects may expand access to health care and impact Massachusetts by:
-Developing innovative programs that expand access to coverage and care;
-Advancing knowledge and information in support of low-income health issues, and laying the foundation for evidence-based results for health care delivery, public and subsidized coverage, and behavioral health services;
-Promoting efforts that validate the impact of social services, such as housing and food security, on health status;
-Evaluating programs, or engaging in a variety of other activities that are aligned with the Foundation’s strategic priorities to promote access to quality care and coverage, behavioral health services, and social equity and health for low-income and vulnerable residents of the Commonwealth.

Successful proposals will:
-Focus on access to health care and coverage for low-income and vulnerable consumers. Programs that can indicate opportunities for cost savings for consumers are desirable.
-Describe a program that doesn’t specifically conform to the requirements of other Foundation program focus areas, yet has merit because it aligns with the Foundation’s mission and strategic focus areas of 1) coverage and care, 2) behavioral health, and 3) social equity and health.
-Articulate a pilot, incubator idea, or demonstration project that supports the Foundation’s mission and the strategic priorities stated above.
-Describe an evaluation, assessment or measurement initiative that advances knowledge about a health care issue aligned with the Foundation’s strategic focus areas and mission.
-Promote a linkage between grantmaking and policy initiatives.

The proposal should describe a framework or process for determining measures of success.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 183985

Number of Grants:

No more than three grants will be awarded in each grant cycle.

Estimated Size of Grant:

Up to $50,000

Term of Contract:

The Foundation will award one-year, non-renewable grants. Applications must describe a deliverable or tangible outcome in twelve (12) months.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

In reviewing proposals for Special Initiatives grants, the Foundation will only consider those organizations that primarily serve low-income and vulnerable people, particularly individuals receiving MassHealth or other subsidized health insurance.

The Foundation does not fund for-profit companies, religious organizations, nor individuals.

The Foundation will not consider requests to support the following:
-Direct medical and clinical care
-Access related to specific diseases or conditions
-Salaries for new positions with no evidence of sustainability beyond the grant period
-Event or conference sponsorships.

Pre-Application Information:

The request should describe other potential funding sources, committed grants, and pending requests.

Full proposals must be submitted through the Foundation’s online portal according to the schedule below. Applicants will be notified about the status of their proposal after each Board meeting.

Proposal Deadlines:
-February 16, 2018
-April 24, 2018 
-August 17, 2018

Notification of Awards:
-May 1, 2019
-June 13, 2019
-October 9, 2019

Contact Information:

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

Apply Online:

Celeste Lee, Senior Director of Grantmaking

Jennifer Lee, Senior Program Officer

For technical and logistical questions related to accessing the online grantmaking portal, please contact:

Evelyn Monteiro, Grants and Administrative Coordinator

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Massachusetts