Lily Auchincloss Foundation: New York City Grants

OVERVIEW: This funder restricts grantmaking to the five boroughs of New York City, and awards grants in the fields of arts, human services, education, and preservation/environment. Grants are between $5,000 and $25,000 and awarded three times per year.

FUNDING AREAS: Arts, human services, preservation, environment, and education

IP TAKE: The grants don't tend to be huge, but this is an accessible funder for nonprofits working in a range of areas. 

PROFILE: The Lily Auchincloss Foundation was established in 1997 to support the needs of New York City through grantmaking in the arts, human services, preservation and education. Born in Newark in 1922, Auchincloss is the daughter of Arnold Louis van Ameringen, who was the founder of International Flavors and Fragrances.

Arnold established his own private grantmaking foundation in 1950, which you can read more about in IP’s van Ameringen Foundation: New York City Grants profile. Arnold’s other daughter, Patricia Kind, established a foundation of her own in 1996, which you can read about in our profile, the Patricia Kind Family Foundation: Philadelphia Grants.

Lily Auchincloss was a writer and editor in New York City, working for prominent titles like McCall’s, Glamour, Look, World Telegram, New York Herald Tribune, and Harper's Bazaar. During her lifetime, the stylish New Yorker was involved in philanthropy and donated to modern art, architecture, and design causes.

Today, the foundation awards general operating support, program support, and other support in the fields of art, education, human services and preservation/environment. Foundation grants often range from $5,000 to $25,000 and organizations may apply for grants once per year. This is a New York City-specific funder and only considers organizations based in the five boroughs and serving their residents. The foundation funds a pretty wide range of issues, as you can see by digging into a recent year's list of grants

Applications are accepted online only, and there are three deadlines per year: March 15, August 15, and December 15. Final decisions for applications submitted in March are announced in July, August applications in December, and December applications in April. Details about the application process can be found on the foundation’s Guidelines page.

Some organizations are nominated for discretionary grants, although unsolicited proposals aren’t accepted for this type of funding. Emergency funding falls into this category as well, and the funder doesn’t award grants to individuals. The foundation asks that nonprofits receiving multi-year grants or one-time grants for three consecutive years take a year or two off before reapplying for support.

A list of recent grantees is available on the foundation’s website, as well. In a past year, the foundation awarded 119 grants totaling over $2.1 million. That year, the foundation reported $53,786,905 in assets. A nearly equal show of support for each program focus area has been represented in recent grantmaking years. However, Auchincloss funding stays in New York.

General questions can be directed to the small staff via an online form or by phone at 212-737-9533. The Lily Auchincloss Foundation is operated by a six-member board of directors and a foundation manager that serves as the lone staff member. Since this is a small foundation, staff and office hours are limited, so the best way to get in touch is via online form and providing your phone number.


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