Small Grants

The Clackamas County Board of Commissioners are focused on jobs and a vibrant economy for all communities, to keep vulnerable residents safe and healthy, and to foster a culture of trust, communication, diversity, and

In an effort to ratify this commitment, the Board of Commissioners has decided to continue its Small Grants Program for the twelfth year. The Budget Committee has allocated $250,000 for the 2020–2021 fiscal year.


Clackamas County encourages faith-based and community-based organizations to apply for grants. While the County will not fund services that are inherently religious in nature, County small grants are awarded competitively without regard to whether the provider is or is not a faithbased organization. No grant funds are set aside specifically for faith-based providers.

Clackamas County does not discriminate against non-governmental organizations on the basis that such organizations have a religious character. Faith-based organizations are eligible to compete for grant funds on the same basis as all other non-governmental organizations. Decisions about grant applications and awards will be made based solely on the competence, capacity, and actions of the provider, not whether it is a secular or faith-based provider.

No grantee may discriminate in its delivery of a Clackamas County grant-funded program against a recipient or potential recipient of services on the basis of religion or religious belief, a refusal to hold a religious belief, or a refusal to actively participate in a religious practice. Grantees must serve people throughout the community. No grantee may use any part of a County small grant to fund religious worship, instruction, or proselytization.

Any specifically religious activity or service made available to clients by the grantee must be voluntary as well as separate in time and location from government funded activities and services. For example, a church that receives direct government aid to provide shelter to homeless individuals may not require those individuals to attend a Bible study or participate in a prayer preceding a meal as part of the grant-funded services they provide. But they may invite those individuals to join them, so long as they make clear that their participation is optional.

To the extent permitted by law, faith-based organizations that receive Clackamas County small grants may — just as secular non-governmental organizations — use their facilities to provide grant-funded services without removing or altering art, icons, literature, or other distinctive symbols from these facilities. In addition, faith-based organizations that apply for or participate in programs supported with Clackamas County small grants may retain their organizational identity including, but not limited to name, internal governance, and mission statements.



The goal of the Small Grants Program is to assist organizations whose purpose is to help the most vulnerable residents of Clackamas County. The focus is to fund small projects that would aid these entities in better serving their target populations. These projects shall demonstrate the ability to become fully self-supporting or shall illustrate that the grant request is for a one-time expense. This program supports agencies that are making an effort to develop and implement innovative projects that would address the following goal:

  • Help most vulnerable families, seniors, and others meet their basic needs such as food assistance and abuse prevention.

This year, aside from giving priority to projects that will serve populations located within Clackamas County’s Community Prosperity Collaboratives (North Clackamas, Estacada, Canby), we will be prioritizing the following criteria:

  • To fill an unanticipated expense gap due to COVID-19
  • Focus on serving Black, Indigenous and People of Color
  • Encourage partnerships to increase community impact

Award Information

  • Applications due by Aug. 13 at 5 p.m. We hope to make decisions by the end of September. Applicants will be notified by email if their projects have been funded. Funds will be available after the Board of County Commissioners’ approval.
  • Projects to be finalized by the end of the 2020-2021 fiscal year.
  • Final report to be turned in no later than July 15, 2021.
  • Maximum award amount is $15,000.
  • Funding to individuals will not be allowed.
  • Funds cannot be used for expenses incurred prior to the award issuance.
  • Funding to agencies not serving clients in Clackamas County will not be considered.
  • Capital and operating expenses must be clearly outlined for each proposed project.

To Apply

Applications are due by Aug. 13. Agencies interested in applying should fill out the application form associated with this announcement. You will need to provide the narrative information requested below and include a proposed project budget.

Please address the following questions:

  • Project description
    Describe the work you propose to conduct with this funding.
    • Explain what the project will accomplish. What is the overall goal of the project?
    • How does it relate to the goals of the Small Grants Program? What are the specific aims or objectives of the project? How will this project positively impact county residents?
    • If applicable, describe your outreach plan.
  • Timeline
    Outline a timeline for the project, indicating key steps and deliverables. If new positions are part of the project, include the hiring process in the timeline.
  • Key staff
    List key staff members that will be responsible for this project and their experience in implementing this type of project.
  • Evaluation
    What outcomes will be measured? How will they be measured – what specific data sources will be used? At what point will they be measured and how will outcome measures be incorporated into program planning?
  • Sustainability
    Describe the plan for sustaining the project beyond this funding.
  • Budget
    Complete budget summary

Application Forms

Eligibility Criteria

Eligible applicants are current nonprofit organizations serving residents of Clackamas County. Eligible projects must address the program’s goal and result in a positive, measurable outcome for Clackamas County residents. Preference will be given to those projects meeting the following criteria:

  • Prevent occurrence of larger, more dire problems later;
  • Save money later through early intervention;
  • Serve people throughout the community.


Funding cycle

  • Applications due by Aug. 13 at 5 p.m.
  • Projects must be finalized by the end of the 2020–2021 fiscal year (June 30, 2021).
  • Final Report to be turned in no later than July 15, 2021.

Funding restrictions

  • Funding to individuals will not be allowed.
  • Only funding to agencies wishing to serve Clackamas County residents with their project will be considered.
  • Capital and operating expenses must be clearly outlined for each proposed project.

Applications will be evaluated by a committee that will consist of staff within the County Administration department, two Leadership Academy alumni and a member from the Equity, Diversity and Inclusion team. Projects will be evaluated based criteria listed in this announcement. For more information, please contact Caroline Hill at 503-655-8261.

Per the Civil Rights Act of 1964, no person shall, on the basis of race, color, or national origin, be excluded from participation, be denied benefits of, or be




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