Santa Barbara Foundation

OVERVIEW: This community funder supports nonprofits in Santa Barbara County, California, in many areas, including youth, organizational capacity, education, blood research and education, landscapes, ecosystems, agriculture and food systems, and community caregiving. Unsolicited grant applications are accepted for some programs.

FUNDING AREAS: Youth, organizational capacity, education, blood research and education, landscapes, ecosystems, agriculture and food systems, community caregiving

IP TAKE: Preserving the natural beauty and land in Santa Barbara County is very important to this funder. Consider pitching an idea to the LEAF Initiative for a local environmental program.

PROFILE: The Santa Barbara Foundation (SBF) has north county headquarters in Santa Maria and south county headquarters in Santa Barbara. This foundation was established by Max Fleischmann in 1928 to serve people living in the area between Santa Maria and Carpinteria.

The foundation has multiple community grant programs to respond to urgent needs and requests from local nonprofits. Youth grants support programs for the development of young people, while express grants award up to $5,000 to strengthen the organizational capacity of nonprofits. SBF facilitates the William and Lottie Daniel Child Care Scholarships for quality child care for local families. The foundation also provides blood research and education grants through the Tri-Counties Blood Bank. Additionally, SBF offers grant opportunities through initiatives for landscapes, ecosystems, agriculture and food systems, and community caregiving.

You can download the grant application from their website. Only nonprofits that serve Santa Barbara County are eligible to apply. SBF also accepts grant applications from schools, libraries, and other public entities through an affiliate or supporting organization. As a rule, SBF does not support fundraising events, recurring events, annual events, or individuals. Completed grant applications should be sent via email to grants@sbfoundation.org—you’ll receive an automatic response upon receipt of your application. Paper applications are not accepted.  

Support for community investments has gone to the Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse, Girls Inc. of Greater Santa Barbara, Hospice of Santa Barbara, and American Dance and Music. Support for express grants and timely opportunities has gone to C.A.R.E. 4 Paws, the Jewish Federation of Greater Santa Barbara, the Pacific Pride Foundation, and the Santa Barbara International Film Festival.

In a recent year, the foundation had nearly $250 million in assets and made over $150 million in grants and contributions. Current financial data can be viewed here.

General questions can be directed to the staff at info@sbfoundation.org. You can reach the Santa Barbara office at (805) 963-1873 and the Santa Maria office at (805) 346-6123. Ronald Gallo is the president and CEO of SBF and Sharyn Main and Phylene Wiggins are senior directors of community investments. Keep up with foundation news and upcoming events on the website.  

PEOPLE:

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