Annenberg Foundation: Los Angeles Grants

OVERVIEW: The foundation makes grants in the Los Angeles area to support animal welfare, the arts, culture and humanities, civic and community, environment, education, military veterans, and human health and wellness. Most grants range between $10,000 and $100,000.

IP TAKE: Annenberg prioritizes funding for organizations with name recognition in the counties of Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernadino, and Ventura. Grant seekers will need to have a budget of $5 million or more to be considered for the standard grant program.

PROFILE: Headquartered in Los Angeles, the Annenberg Foundation was created in 1989 and supports local and worldwide communities through grants, technical assistance, and direct charitable activities. It seeks “to advance the public well-being through improved communication.” Annenberg prioritizes support for nonprofits working with unserved residents of Los Angeles, Ventura, Orange, Riverside and San Bernardino Counties. However, it also supports organizations that serve the Los Angeles region but are headquartered elsewhere.

Annenberg makes about $100 million in grants annually to Los Angeles metro-area foundations. Its funding areas include: animal welfare, the arts, culture and humanities, civic and community, environment, education, military veterans, and human health and wellness. The foundation will not make grants to individuals and "discourages" requests for capital campaigns for building construction or multiyear grants.

Past Annenberg grants in Los Angeles include: AltaSea at the Port of Los Angeles for $16,848,970 and $4,329,637; CCF Community Initiatives Fun for $1 million; Claremont McKenna College for $1 million; Crossroads School for Arts & Sciences for $1 million.  

Annenberg is willing to take grantmaking risk — with "occasional failure" — and the foundation provides support for organizations that provide collaborative and visionary solutions to complex problems. In terms of its funding, Annenberg is also a relatively open-ended source, as it covers a lot of ground in program areas.

Grant seekers will need to have a budget of $5 million or more to be considered for the standard grant program. Nonprofits with a smaller budget may find more support from the Annenberg Alchemy.

Fortunately, the foundation is one of the more accessible funders for nonprofits in Los Angeles, and its grantmaking process and guidelines are clear. It accepts applications on a rolling basis, and average grants range from $10,000 to $250,000 for general operating expenses or project support. Of note: As the city's largest private foundation, the grant process is also extremely competitive — it only accepts roughly one in 10 applicants. Grant seekers can reach the foundation office at 213-403-3110 or via email at requests@annenbergfoundation.org with general questions.

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