Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Location: Po Box 23350, Seattle, 98102 WA

EIN: 56-2618866

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How many hours did the grant application process take?

20 hours




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Important Information

2017 Deadlines:

Types of Grants Awarded:

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Top descriptors for this funder

8Bureaucratic6Difficult to work with5Doesn't "get" nonprofits and issues5Inadvertently exerts negative influence in the field5Positive leader in the field4Culturally incompetent4Risk averse3Risk taker3Gives more than money2Worth the time to pitch2Repeat funding1"Gets" nonprofits and issues

Advice from a Friend

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Oct 26, 2017

Reviewer 986 - Grant Applicant - applied in 2017

The BMGF is very large, and peopled with all manner of professionals (across the spectrum from young field ex-pats to very experienced subject matter experts). Each program portfolio is "siloed," and getting in front of the right person - one who can authorize a grant proposal - can be a challenge. Several program areas seem to be in an ongoing state of "re-prioritizing" or re-structure, which delays the application process and decision-making.

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Aug 30, 2017

Reviewer 513 - Professional in the field

Find a person you know working for the foundation - at any level - but the most influential will be program officer and above. Also, sign up to be notified of Grand Challenge/Exploration quarterly RFP - these are short (2-5pg), specific challenges focused on innovative approaches undertaken all over the world. Otherwise, partner first with UN Agencies, USAID, DFID, GIZ and specific ministries of Nigeria, India, etc. The foundation appreciates referrals from these key partners internationally and domestically.


Difficult to work with, Bureaucratic, Risk averse

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Aug 30, 2017 2

Grant Applicant - applied in 2017

I think it is very difficult to get funded by Gates Fdn. Requires strong alignment of what you're doing with their specific goals & interests.


Positive leader in the field, Risk taker

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Jun 15, 2016

Partner or work closely with this funder

know which team at the foundation you need to apply to (spend time on the website), know the industry/space of the team you're applying to, ask for an introduction through that space, you will likely get a meeting or call to determine alignment. you need to be targeted in your ask and know the space.


Repeat funding, Gives more than money


Uses their language

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Jun 15, 2016 2

Grant Applicant - applied in 2010

Take their $. Be careful not to let them co-op you!


Worth the time to pitch, Multiyear funding


Inadvertently exerts negative influence in the field

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Jun 15, 2016 1

Grant Applicant - applied in 2016

To apply for a different grant unless you have the time, organizational capacity, and knowledge of how to really leverage this grant opportunity.


Worth the time to pitch, Repeat funding, Positive leader in the field

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Jun 15, 2016


They have been very responsive to our needs.


Positive leader in the field

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Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation