Phase 1- Inquiry

  • Process: Organizations will be invited to submit a Letter of Inquiry (LOI) to determine eligibility and alignment with ESF funding priorities. Directions will be emailed to the organization. LOIs are collected solely for preliminary information-gathering purposes. Please refer to the grant guidelines before submitting an LOI.
  • Timeline: ESF has no calendar deadlines for submitting LOIs as organizations are invited throughout the year. The LOI review process typically takes one month. During this time, the ESF Director may contact the organization to discuss the project in more detail. Once the LOI review has been completed, the organization will be notified as to whether it has been selected to advance to Phase 2.

Phase 2- Grant Development

  • Process: Only selected organizations are invited to submit a full grant application. The grant application template will be emailed to the organization. Please note that applying does not guarantee funding. During the grant development phase, the ESF Director will engage with the applicants via email, phone conversations, in-person meetings, and site visits. Applicants are encouraged to contact the ESF Director with questions during this phase.
  • Timeline: The ESF Director will discuss an application due date, which is typically a 30 days after invitation to apply. The grant application review process takes from one to three months. All grant decisions are the responsibility of the ESF Board.  Applicants will be notified as soon as a decision has been made. If approved, an award letter and grant agreement will be emailed to the grantee organization for review and signature. Checks for the award will be mailed according to the dates outlined in the grant agreement.

Phase 3 – Grant Reporting

  • Process: Grantees will be asked to provide ESF with a written report on the progress of the project/program and its deliverables as specified in the grant agreement. Reports provide a valuable opportunity to share and reflect on accomplishments, challenges, and lessons learned during the reporting period.
  • Timeline: ESF requires both interim and year-end reports. Reporting forms will be emailed to the grantee in advance. Due dates are outlined in the grant award letter and grant agreement.