2 survey respondents
Location: 12 Elton Hills Drive Nw, Rochester, 55901 MN
Types of Grants Awarded:
For Fiscal Year
Change in Assets FY :
Amount of Grants to Minnesota Nonprofits:
Reviewer 793 - Grant Applicant - applied in 2020
They have made some changes - significantly streamlined the pre-proposal, which is appreciated, but I was disappointed to learn that they require not just a board signature, but a board resolution approving the application, which is a huge barrier if your board meets once a month or less often. This requirement also invites micro-management from the board, whose responsibilities in most nonprofits is and should be focused broadly on financial management, not approving individual grant requests. We submit 5-10 grant proposals a month and if everyone required this, it would completely gum up the works. What is the purpose of this requirement anyway?
Gives more than money, Friendly, Builds relationships, Responsive
Current or former grantee
They all seem like lovely, helpful people, and I'm pretty sure that the staff are not in favor of jumping through these hoops either, but someone who is much farther removed must be making decisions about the grant process.
They are making it difficult for smaller organizations to participate and as a smaller funder, that seems like a disconnect.
Think about what you ask nonprofits to do and then multiply that by the 50-100 proposals we all do to fund our work each year. It is a little crazy to need to a full-time person who just complies with grant requirements - applications and reports.
Grant is still pending
Quick responses - good communication.
Reviewer 793 - Grant Applicant - applied in 2017
The pre-application is almost as much work as a full proposal, so make sure you are a fit before you put the time in. There are a lot of steps in this process, so be prepared for multiple contacts, follow-ups, etc.
Doesn't "get" nonprofits and issues, Bureaucratic
Current or former grantee
Funded for amount requested
The application process is cumbersome, so I imagine smaller organizations (of which there are plenty in their service area) are at a disadvantage in applying, especially if they don't have a professional fundraiser on staff.
Take a look at how your process might disenfranchise grantees (and most certainly creates a lot extra work). The whole thing has an air of distrust about it - for example, only releasing 1/2 of the grant money upon approval and waiting until you receive a 6 mo report before releasing the other half. I can understand why you want to be careful with your money, but there are better ways.
Oh I almost forgot about the request to appear in person to make your case for less than five minutes. This is all for a grant of a few thousand
They are responsive when you call or email.
RAF has changed our grant-making process since this review was written. We now ask for only a brief Letter of Intent that should take 15 minutes to 1/2 hour to fill out. Then, we invite a smaller cohort of project applicants to complete a full application.
There may be some confusion as to the purpose of the Grant Showcase, the event the reviewer referenced as a presentation. The Showcase is meant to leverage or attract additional dollars toward a grant award from donors in the community. If invited to the Showcase, the grantee has already secured a grant from the Foundation. The Showcase is a mechanism to add dollars to the grant award, often substantially. In 2019, the additional gifts were over 50% of the value of the initial award amounts.
The Foundation continues to reassess its programming and adjusts accordingly, using feedback from grantees and those who have not been grantees but are working to better the community. Our goal is to better enable the good work being done in greater Rochester, increase capacity of those groups doing the work, and encourage philanthropy from individuals and businesses to support this shared work.