Peery Foundation: Grants for the Bay Area

OVERVIEW: The Peery Foundation's local portfolio is guided by local schools and the school district in East Palo Alto, California. It’s regional portfolio extends from San Francisco to San Jose and is focused on poverty.

FUNDING AREAS: Education, East Palo Alto youth, poverty

IP TAKE: A program must serve a critical mass of East Palo Alto youth to be considered for a local grant from Peery. This is a place where about six of ten kids do not finish high school, so education is the number one priority.

PROFILE: Established in 1978, the Peery Foundation is based in Palo Alto, California. Richard “Dick” Peery and John Arrillaga made their fortunes in Silicon Valley real estate, turning orange groves into office parks for the tech industry. Dick Peery established the Peery Foundation to strengthen youth and families to build lives of dignity and self-reliance. Locally, the funder is focused on East Palo Alto and Belle Haven youth. Regionally, it is focused on poverty in the Bay Area and Silicon Valley.

The funder’s local program focuses on closing the opportunity gap to prevent the achievement gap from widening. Peery prefers to see a demonstrated and articulated need by community stakeholders, high-quality services, and transformational experiences. It does not fund programs that are not requested by local schools or the community, nor does it typically fund housing or health causes. Past local grantees include the East Palo Alto Charter School, the East Palo Alto Youth Court, and the Ravenswood Education Foundation. 

In the regional and global programs, the Peery Foundation invests in early to mid-stage social entrepreneurs who are tackling poverty in big ways. The foundation’s regional portfolio extends further to cover Silicon Valley and the San Francisco Bay Area. On a regional scale, Peery aims to support a network of poverty solutions for youth and families in the Bay Area. Although the foundation focuses most of its resources on early and mid-stage local entrepreneurs, it is also willing to expand proven national programs in the region. Regionally, Peery likes to see a focus on increasing economic options and opportunity and pilot or proof of concept stage social entrepreneur-led organizations.

It has historically provided one-time and multi-year unrestricted grants that range between $25,000 and $100,000 per year in size. View the past grantee list to learn about past giving. Grantmaking is largely focused on East Palo Alto, Silicon Valley, and the Bay Area of San Francisco.

The grantmaking process begins with an initial screening before meeting with leadership, doing an organizational assessment, and establishing reasonable milestones. The Peery Foundation encourages a quick phone call to discuss a nonprofit’s work rather than initial proposal submission. The foundation does not have specific funding cycles and makes grants on a rolling basis. To get in touch with the foundation staff, call 650-644-4660 or email the staff at


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