Schenectady Foundation: New York Funders

OVERVIEW: The Schenectady Foundation supports neighborhoods, youth, education, scholarships, and community development in Schenectady County, New York.

FUNDING AREAS: Neighborhoods, youth, education, scholarships, community development

IP TAKE: This is an ideal community funder to contact about a neighborhood improvement project, but it is also open to most other projects that are relevant to community needs.

PROFILE: Established in 1962, the Schenectady Foundation is a community foundation based in Schenectady, New York. William H. Milton, 3rd, was a Schenectady Trust leader who first developed the idea for the foundation and gained the support of community leaders and the bank. The foundation began making grants in 1963 and is the only community funder that exclusively funds Schenectady County in New York. The foundation funds local efforts related to neighborhoods, youth, education, scholarships, and community development.

The Schenectady Foundation awards between $1 million and $2 million in grants per year in the forms of grants and scholarships. Typically, the most money is budgeted for neighborhoods in an effort to improve conditions in local neighborhoods. The foundation also awards “open grants” to address emerging needs and promising projects of all kinds in the community. The funder steadily supports youth causes related to job readiness, giving youth a voice, mentoring, and access to support services. The Schenectady Foundation also provides capacity building support to nonprofits.

Grants range between about $3,000 and $20,000. The foundation’s micro-grants range between $3,000 and $6,000 on most occasions but can be as large as $10,000. Learn more about this funder’s local giving in the foundation’s recent tax records. Grantmaking focuses on Schenectady County in New York. Past local grantees include the YWCA Early Learning Center Program and STEMXplor.

This foundation accepts unsolicited grant applications from nonprofits. It has a two-step online grant process that requires an initial letter of inquiry before a full proposal. Letter of inquiry deadlines are typically in April and August. Full grant applications are then due in May and September. Direct general questions to the staff at or 518-393-9500.


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