Rapid Response Grants
Thanks for your interest in our Rapid Response grants. You can read stories about how some of our grantees have moved to take rapid action here.
As a community foundation, North Star Fund and our donors fuel the movement for economic justice and peace. If you would like to support North Star Fund for these or other grants, you can make a tax-deductible gift here.
Para información en español, por favor llame a la oficina: 212-620-9110.
Purpose of These Grants
To support organizing, activism, and strategic convening in response to urgent threats or breaking opportunities, especially during critical junctures of a campaign.
This grant is intended to help organizations achieve a timely and specific outcome or impact within three to six months, usually as part of a long-term goal to achieve systems-based change.
$2,500 or $5,000 for immediate actions.
Organizations may receive up to $5,000 within a 12-month period.
- Is led by the people most directly impacted by the issues the organization works on, and those members have clear decision-making power
- Brings people together and develops the leadership capacity of the people they work with
- Works to identify, articulate and address the root causes of the problems they work on, not just the symptoms
- Creates systemic change through “campaigns,” a planned series of events or activities that alter unjust power relationships
- Has a strong vision for social justice and is committed to working towards a larger movement
Strong preference will be given to organizations that:
- Have less access to foundation funders, capacity building or training opportunities
- Lack “back office” administrative and/or fundraising support from a host organization or fiscal sponsor
Still have questions? We explain these criteria in more detail here.
Rapid Response Eligibility
In addition to the criteria listed above, North Star Fund will consider requests from organizations that meet all of the following requirements:
- Organizations developing a response due to an unforeseen shift in political landscape, or organizations at a critical juncture within a campaign
- Can demonstrate some elements of community organizing
- Work is conducted in one of the five boroughs of New York City, or in Westchester, Rockland, Putnam, Orange, Dutchess, Ulster, Sullivan, Columbia, Greene, Delaware, Rensselaer, Albany and Schoharie counties. Grantees must be located either in NYC or within at least one of these counties, but do not need to work in all the listed locations. Local chapters of statewide or national organizations may apply.
Due to limited resources, North Star Fund will prioritize:
- Current and former grantees
- Organizations that have an annual budget under $800,000
- Rapid response grants do not support:
- Travel to conferences
- Budget shortfalls or cash flow issues
- New project ideas (for seed funding, you may apply for a Catalyst Grant)
Organizations may submit a rapid response request through our online application portal. A program officer will review the request and contact you for more information or share a decision with you within a few days.
Frequently Asked Questions
Get your questions answered on our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) page.
How To Apply
Organizations that meet the eligibility requirements may apply for a Rapid Response grant at any time. To apply, please fill out a short questionnaire online.
If applying online creates a hardship, you may contact us to schedule an appointment by phone. If you are in NYC, reach out to our NYC Program Officer Catherine Eusebio at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you are in the Hudson Valley, email Hudson Valley Program Director Mayra Hidalgo Salazar at email@example.com.
Please be prepared to answer the following questions:
1. Please briefly describe your organization.
2a. Please describe your membership.
2b. Please describe any informal or formal decision-making and leadership roles of members in your organization.
3. Please describe the urgent threat or critical opportunity.
4. Please explain your organization’s proposed response to this urgent threat or critical opportunity. What are your expected results or outcomes from these actions?
5. What is the amount of the request? How will the money be used?