Flora Family Foundation: Grants for Global Development

OVERVIEW: The Flora Family Foundation’s Gap Program awards grants to support a broad spectrum of work in least developed countries.

IP TAKE: The foundation appears open to any and all types of global development work, as long as the work is worthwhile in the eyes of the board.

PROFILE: Established in 1998, the Flora Family Foundation began after Walter Hewlett, the '98 chair of the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, became frustrated with having to turn away worthwhile proposals that did not adhere to the Hewlett Foundation’s grantmaking guidelines. Walter, along with a few of his siblings, took the matter to Herant Katchadourian, a Stanford professor and Hewlett Foundation board member, with the idea of establishing another family foundation. The resulting Flora Family Foundation funds grants in two, very specific program areas: the Climate Protection Program and the Gap Program.

The Gap Program offers grantseekers latitude in that it only specifies that the grantees must be working to “…improve the lives of the poor in selected developing countries.” All grantees are selected by invitation only and grants tend to be small, between $2,500 and $100,000, with occasional grants of $125,000 to $150,000.

The foundation does not technically impose geographic restrictions on its grantees; however, it notes that it usually awards grants to specific developing countries. At present, the foundation concentrates its grantmaking to Haiti and Africa.

The Haiti Initiative awards grants to organizations working toward the redevelopment of rural Haiti, women and girls’ empowerment, and the provision of basic services such as water and electricity. Grants to organizations working in the country tend to be on the high end of the foundation’s grantmaking scale, with most between $50,000 and $100,000. In Africa, grantmaking focuses on issues that impede global development, women's and girls’ empowerment, children’s rights, land rights, water and sanitation, and food insecurity.

The foundation appears to prefer supporting small, grassroots groups rather than larger international organizations. To get more detailed information about the types of nonprofits receiving Flora Family Foundation support, explore its Grantees page.

The Flora Family Foundation does not accept unsolicited grant applications or requests for funding.

PEOPLE: 

  • Steve Toben, President
  • Patricia Gump, Program Administrator and Corporate Secretary 

LINKS: