Pasadena Child Health Foundation

OVERVIEW: This funder supports children’s health causes in the Greater Pasadena area and some incorporated parts of Los Angeles County. Early childhood development, community and family strengthening, obesity, and access to care are major interests.

IP TAKE: Some parts of Los Angeles County can get in on the action here. Grant seekers should try proposing a program that helps parents and children be healthy together.

PROFILE: Based in Pasadena, California, the Pasadena Child Health Foundation (PCHF) evolved from other health organizations for children and was officially established in 1951. In 2016, the foundation board chose to become a fund of the Pasadena Community Foundation, however, the PCHF grantmaking program is still the same. PCHF mostly supports children who attend school and live in the Greater Pasadena area. This includes Pasadena, Altadena, Sierra Madre, and some unincorporated parts of Los Angeles County.

The foundation has assets of more than $6 million and supports a wide range of children’s health causes. The main four funding priorities are Promoting Healthy Early Childhood Development, Strengthening Family and Community Connections, Healthy Weight, and Access to Health Benefits and Services. For early development, PCHF looks for ideas about “optimizing physical, cognitive, and emotional development during pregnancy and throughout the first five years of life.” Programs to strengthen families and communities should enhance “protective factors and social connections that serve as a critical platform for healthy behaviors and development.” Healthy weight grants should help kids fight obesity and boost self-esteem. And finally, access to health support makes grants to groups that remove barriers to health and medical services.

PCHF looks to invest in prevention and early intervention strategies. It also likes to fund regional collaborations. These are all preferred over grants for direct services. PCHF does not fund building campaigns, major equipment purchases, biomedical research, or annual fund drives. Local nonprofits, public charities, and government agencies can be eligible for grants.

In a recent cycle, the foundation made grants of about $152,000, pushing its total grantmaking over $6.8 million since 1992. Most recent grants have been between $10,000 and $25,000. Sample grants can be viewed here. Top-earning grantees include Rose Bowl Aquatics, Mother’s Club Family Learning Center, and Planned Parenthood Pasadena and San Gabriel Valley. The funder asks that requests do not exceed $25,000.

The application process starts with a letter of inquiry. Nonprofits can download the letter of inquiry and application forms from the PCHF website. In the past, letters of inquiry have been due in March, and then groups received invitations to submit full proposals in April.

Mike deHilster is the foundation’s program officer and the best point of contact for grantseekers. He can be reached at or 626-796-2097 ext. 5. The foundation also has an advisory board with about a dozen members.


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