General FAQ

Where does the Couch Family Foundation make grants?

The Couch Family Foundation focuses its grant making on supporting organizations and programs that serve communities in the Upper Valley of New Hampshire and Vermont, and Martha’s Vineyard.

How does the Foundation define the geographic boundaries of the Upper Valley?

We define Upper Valley as the area including Grafton County and Sullivan County in New Hampshire; and Orange County and Windsor County in Vermont.

Is your foundation related to the Couch Family Foundation located in Florida?

No. Despite the similarity of our names, there has never been a family or business connection between our Foundation and the Couch Family Foundation based in Hillsborough County, Florida.

Grant FAQ

Does the Foundation provide project and/or unrestricted support?

The Foundation makes both project and unrestricted grants.

We encourage project grants applications that support the following priorities:

  • New initiatives or pilot programs;

  • Special projects or enhancements of current projects and programs;

  • Impact studies or evaluations of current programs; or

  • Organizational capacity building.

The Couch Family Foundation recognizes the critical role general operating funds play for healthy nonprofit organizations. While we prefer new grant seekers to propose a project-based grant, we would encourage new grant seekers interested in unrestricted funding to contact us prior to submitting an application.

What is the typical grant size for a first-time grantee?

The Foundation generally awards grants of $10,000 or less to first-time grantees. However, if you would like to propose a project with a larger grant budget, please contact Foundation staff to discuss.

Can first time applicants apply for unrestricted funding?

We encourage first-time applicants to propose a project grant when possible, though the Foundation will also consider requests for unrestricted funding from first-time applicants.

Does the Foundation provide multi-year funding?

The Foundation considers multi-year funding for projects.

Is there a cap on requests for unrestricted funding?

Our general guideline for requests for unrestricted funding is $10,000 or less. If you would like to request a larger unrestricted grant, we suggest reaching out to Foundation staff .

Can returning grantees apply for both unrestricted and project funding at the same time?

Yes, returning grantees that have received funding for two or more consecutive years may submit multiple grant requests in the same calendar year for different projects OR for one project (via the Community application) and one unrestricted grant (via the Annual application).

Applicants should complete a separate application for each request.

Application FAQ

My organization is not a 501(c)(3). Can I apply for funding?

No. You must be tax-exempt public charity, or be fiscally sponsored by one.

What is a fiscal sponsor?

A fiscal sponsor is a nonprofit organization that provides fiduciary oversight, financial management, and other administrative services to help build the capacity of charitable projects. More information about fiscal sponsorship can be found on the website of the National Council of Nonprofits. If you are using a fiscal sponsor, the Foundation does require a written agreement from you and your fiscal sponsor as part of the concept paper submission process.

Which application should I use?

Please refer to the guidelines on Grant Opportunities for information on selecting the right application.

Do I need to submit a letter of intent before applying for funding?

No letter of intent is required before submitting an application. Please ensure your organization fits the criteria outlined under Who We Support before submitting a proposal.

Is it possible to get an extension on a grant application deadline?

Please contact us to discuss an extension.

What is the difference between project goals and project outcomes?

Goals express the project’s purpose, while the outcomes are the anticipated changes in the community or for the target population as a result of the project.

Do I need an Access Code to complete an application?

No, you do not Access Code to complete an application.

Can I review the application before I begin completing an application?

Yes, please visit Grant Opportunities to preview the Foundation’s grant application

I forgot to include some information in my application. Can I revise it?

Please contact grants manager, Paula Lentoni, at Paula will work with you to include the additional information.

How do I know if you received my application?

An automatic email notification is generated when you submit your application via our online grant application system.

Photography Credits

Photograph courtesy of Upper Valley Trails Alliance