Frequently Asked Questions

How do I know if my institution is eligible to apply for a grant?

The Foundations award grants to 501(c)(3) non-profit organizations and institutions whose work aligns with our philanthropic guidelines. (We do not provide grants to individuals.) Grantee organizations must be based in and operate within the United States. Institutional quality and leadership are key criteria for all grants.

Where do I find information to apply for a grant?

Throughout 2015 and into 2016, we are accepting proposals in Private Higher Education and Interfaith Leadership & Religious Literacy by invitation only. We continue to accept proposals in Public Educational Media under the current guidelines.

How may we be invited to submit a grant request in the Private Higher Education or Religious Literacy & Interfaith Leadership programs?

During 2015 we will work with organizations and institutions that have already submitted proposals in our current areas of philanthropic focus. We will keep our website updated with opportunities for grant proposal submissions.

What will the new areas of funding include once strategic planning has concluded?

The board of trustees and staff are conducting comprehensive analysis of our existing programs and future possible areas of philanthropic priorities. We will share updates during our strategic review and hope to have this process completed in 2016.

May an institution submit multiple grants at once?

Only one grant proposal per institution should be submitted for any one grant cycle, unless approved for an exception by an AVDF staff member.

Do the Foundations fund indirect costs?

The Arthur Vining Davis Foundations do not fund indirect costs.

Do I need to be invited to submit a proposal in the Public Educational Media program?

During the Foundations’ process of strategic review, proposals may be submitted for the Public Educational Media program under the current guidelines, provided they meet these three criteria: a) the AVDF grant is the final capstone funding for completion of production; b) the film is assured of national audience by PBS or another high quality distributor such as APM; and c) the film represents high quality educational programs with evidence of enduring value.

I am an independent film producer with no 501(c)(3). How do I apply for a grant?

Independent producers may apply through a 501(c)(3) non-profit fiscal sponsor, such as a collaborative organization or public television station. To be eligible, the project must be in post-production with commitment for national broadcast from PBS or another high quality distributor such as APM.

Do you support feature films or programs for broadcast on cable networks?

Currently, support of film is limited to public educational television programming and accompanying educational media for teachers and students.

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