Community Foundation for Northeast Florida Grants

OVERVIEW: This funder awards competitive grants in early childhood and the arts in the Florida counties of Duval, St. Johns, Nassau, Baker and Clay. It also funds initiatives related to education, aging, neighborhoods, and nonprofit capacity building.

FUNDING AREAS: Early childhood, the arts, Putnam County, strengthening neighborhoods, nonprofit capacity building, aging adults, public education reform

IP TAKE: Grant seekers not yet affiliated with CFNF should pursue grants in early childhood and the arts. Grant seekers should also call the grantmaking staff to discuss their program before submitting anything.

PROFILE: Based in Jacksonville, Florida, the Community Foundation for Northeast Florida (CFNF) was established in 1964 and serves the residents of the Florida counties of Duval, St. Johns, Nassau, Baker and Clay. There are more than 500 funds at this community foundation, and it has given away over $450 million in grants. At the end of a recent year, the funder had close to $400 million in assets. The foundation seeks to engage in “stimulating philanthropy to build a better community.”

Grantmaking at CFNF has steadily grown every year in recent years. This funder only accepts grant applications for its competitive grants program, which covers the fields of early childhood, the arts, and Putnam County. Although CFNF does not make grants to individuals, it makes exceptions for individual artists.

In addition to competitive grants, CFNF also works with nonprofits on strengthening neighborhoods, nonprofit capacity building, aging adults and public education reform. But unfortunately for grant seekers, the foundation does not accept unsolicited proposals for initiative grants. This foundation also has a very active LGBT fund that supports local LGBT groups.

However, about 85 percent of CFNF grants come from donor-advised and designated funds. None of these funds accept applications. Grant seekers can download a list of recent grantees on the foundation’s Receive page and learn more about them on the Success Stories page.

Each type of competitive grant has its own set of guidelines and its own application. In the past, CFNF has funded services to at-risk children under age six, individual artist grants, professional development and capacity-building for small arts groups, and visual arts in St. Augustine. Putnam County receives special preference, especially when it comes to grants for health, hunger, veterans and education. Although the foundation supports programs for aging adults in Northeast Florida, it has not opened up a competitive grantmaking process lately.

Grant seekers seeking to confirm whether they are eligible for a grant should call the foundation before submitting anything. Overall, this is a funder that provides program support, not capital or general operating support. Read through the FAQ section to learn more about funding opportunities.

Follow this funder’s News and Events page to keep up with recent happenings and grant awards. General questions can be directed to the staff at 904-356-4483 or


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