FISA Foundation invites Letters of Inquiry for programs and services that advance the rights and address the needs of people with disabilities in Southwestern Pennsylvania

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FISA Foundation is accepting Letters of Inquiry until February 1, 2022, for grants to be awarded in June 2022.

As a Foundation committed to equity, justice, safety, and inclusion for people with disabilities, with an intentional focus on addressing structural racism, FISA Foundation has issued an open call for Letters of Inquiry for the following priority areas:

  • Improving access to healthcare and dental care for people with disabilities. Proposals addressing the needs of people of color with disabilities and/or those who have complex disabilities are of particular interest.
  • Addressing bias among healthcare professionals.
  • Addressing or preventing abuse and violence against people with disabilities.
  • Supporting people with disabilities in pursuit of safety, healing, and justice after domestic or sexual violence.
  • Promoting equal rights, access, and full inclusion for people with disabilities, particularly Black people and other people of color with disabilities, in all aspects of life.
  • Initiatives led by people with disabilities and/or designed to empower people with disabilities to participate in effective advocacy and change-making.
  • Intersectional advocacy and movement-building to cultivate cross-disability collaboration and to integrate disability issues into broader justice-seeking work.
  • Efforts by disability organizations to address racism to better reach and serve people of color with disabilities.

Timeline:

  • Submit Letters of Inquiry by February 1, 2022
  • Notification of decisions about LOIs and invitations to submit full proposals by March 1, 2022.
  • Invited proposals due by March 23, 2022
  • Funding decisions announced mid-June

Types of funding:

Organizations may request funding for:

  • General operating support for programs or services that advance the above-mentioned priorities
  • Ongoing programs or projects
  • Capacity building initiatives, including technology
  • Advocacy
  • Organizational efforts to become more welcoming, inclusive, and equitable in serving people with disabilities.
  • New and innovative projects or programs

Unfortunately, due to other pressing needs, FISA would be unlikely to consider projects to help arts and culture organizations be more welcoming and inclusive of people with disabilities in this funding opportunity.

Eligibility:

Grants will be made to 501(c)(3) organizations, or projects with a nonprofit fiscal sponsor, for services provided in the ten-county region of Southwestern PA.

*Definitional note: FISA Foundation focuses its disability-related grantmaking on adults and children with physical, intellectual, sensory, and developmental disabilities. While we recognize that mental health intersects with many of our other priorities, the primary diagnosis of mental illness is outside our scope.  FISA does fund cross-disability efforts that include mental health.

Award Information:

Total funding available for the fall funding cycle is approximately $250,000, and we expect the average grant size to be under $25,000.

Instructions:

Letters of Inquiry should be 2-3 pages and include a brief overview of the organization, description of the need and the proposed project or program, the expected outcomes of the initiative, the amount of the request and the total budget for the program. Letters should be accompanied by the FISA Grant Application form. (You can also use the application in Word format FISA Grant Application Word Format)

Email Letters of Inquiry to info@fisafoundation.org

Letters of Inquiry will be reviewed by a panel of FISA staff and board members.

Criteria will include:

  • Potential of the project to positively impact the lives of people with disabilities
  • Feasibility of the proposed plan
  • The degree to which people with disabilities have shaped the design of the proposed program and will be involved in implementation

Questions:

Contact Shani Lasin, Program Officer at shani@fisafoundation.org

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