Grant Guidelines and Eligibility

As the Yawkey Foundations look ahead to the coming years, our trustees have begun evaluating the Foundation's grant making, with the goal of setting a new course that is consistent with Tom and Jean Yawkey's values. The trustees are considering strategic changes to expand the reach of the Foundations into communities, particularly to groups that support children and families in Boston and in the Gateway Cities.

As we conduct this work, and for the immediate future, the Foundations will only accept grant applications from organizations that received funding in 2018. While this past funding will provide eligibility to submit applications, it is no guarantee of future funding.

Our process will be ongoing, and we will provide updates as appropriate. We ask for your patience and understanding as we continue to carry out the important mission established by the generosity of Tom and Jean Yawkey.


Grants are made to nonprofit organizations that make significant and positive impacts on the quality of life for children, families, and the underserved in New England and Georgetown County, South Carolina. In addition, the Foundations also consider the following:

  • Grants are only made to organizations that are tax-exempt under section 501c3 of the Internal Revenue Code
  • Relevance to the Yawkey Foundations’ Mission and Areas of Giving
  • Organization’s fiscal health and ability to manage its resources effectively
  • Organization’s ability to leverage funding and support from other sources
  • Effective use of prior grants from the Yawkey Foundations and results achieved
  • Strong and skilled leadership at board and staff levels, as well as meaningful commitment by the entire board
  • Likelihood of proposed activities, budget, and timetable to achieve the desired results
  • Where possible, evidence of collaboration with other organizations

Please also note the following conditions before applying for a grant from the Yawkey Foundations:

  • Requests will not be reviewed until a full report on the expenditure of the previous grant has been received. Please see the Reporting Process for more information
  • The Yawkey Foundations will only consider one request from an organization per calendar year
  • Requests must be limited to $25,000 unless otherwise directed
  • Organizations that have received three years of consecutive funding will not be eligible to reapply for funding for a two-year period. This policy enables the Yawkey Foundations to provide funding to a wider number of organizations. There may be some exceptions for longer term projects or programs with which the Yawkey Foundations have a historical relationship
  • Since 2002, the Yawkey Foundations have committed nearly $300 million to a wide range of capital projects throughout Boston, Massachusetts, New England, and beyond. These grants have transformed schools, hospitals, social service programs, institutions of higher education, athletic facilities, and family museums throughout the region. We are proud of the work we have done, particularly its impact on the many people - students, patients, athletes, and families - who have benefited from enhanced facilities and programming. Tom and Jean Yawkey would be proud of the significant impact their legacy has made on so many people throughout Boston and beyond.

    The Foundations are currently engaged in a number of capital projects that have been ongoing for several years. Beyond those projects, in an effort to evaluate the impact of the Foundation's grantmaking and set a course for the years ahead that is consistent with Tom and Jean Yawkey's intentions for the Foundations, the Yawkey Foundations are not accepting requests or entertaining any conversations related to major capital grants at this time.

The following entities are ineligible for a grant from The Yawkey Foundations:

  • Organizations that are not tax-exempt under section 501c3 of the Internal Revenue Code
  • Events/Conferences/Travel/Sponsorships/Ads
  • Individuals
  • Private Foundations
  • 509(a)(3) Type III non-functionally integrated organizations
  • Organizations or Programs that provide benefits outside of the United States
  • Government Agencies, or Agencies directly benefitting Public Entities
  • Public School Districts and Public Schools (including Charter Schools)
  • Political Campaigns or Causes and Lobbying
  • Community and Economic Development Corporations
  • Religious Organizations, where the grant is to be used for sectarian purposes (the Foundations will consider requests for non-religious programs of faith-based organizations)
  • Organizations with goals of eliminating operating deficits or retirement of debt
  • General Endowments
  • General Capital Campaigns
  • Awards/Prizes/Monuments
  • Fraternal, Trade, Civic, or Labor Organizations
  • Music, Video, or Film Production
  • Feasibility or Research Studies
  • Intermediary Organizations or Foundations

There may be some exceptions for organizations or programs with which the Yawkey Foundations have a historical relationship.