Irvine makes grants in three program areas: Arts, California Democracy and Youth. Within each program, we have identified priorities for our grantmaking. Our staff consults with practitioners, researchers, policymakers and a wide range of nonprofits to determine how best to advance these priorities.
When we identify organizations whose work fits well with our program priorities, we may invite them to submit a grant proposal. In addition, Irvine places a premium on long-term partnership with organizations whose priorities align with ours and who have demonstrated a capacity to have positive impact.
As a result of this approach, the majority of our grantees are identified and contacted by our program staff. While we accept unsolicited inquiries from grantseekers, we are able to fund relatively few of them.
In our Arts program, we accept inquiries for funding only through our three separate Exploring Engagement Funds. Each fund employs a competitive selection process, and each has its own eligibility requirements and application process. Of the 200 applications we receive each year, between 15 percent and 20 percent are selected for funding.
In our California Democracy and Youth programs, we receive about 150 unsolicited letters of inquiry each year. While we accept unsolicited inquiries for these programs, we are able to fund less than one percent of them. This is because of the more targeted nature of these grantmaking programs.
We respect the time and effort that goes into submitting a grant inquiry, and we are committed to responding within three months of the date of your submission.