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Activities supported by grants must be charitable, educational, literary, or scientific, as defined under the appropriate provisions of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code and Treasury Regulations. The Foundation monitors grants through regular financial and performance reports.

Grantees must have a current 501(c)(3) Public Charity status from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), be a government entity, or be an IRS-recognized tribe. Inquiries from a private foundation, as defined in Section 509(a) of the Internal Revenue Code, will not be reviewed. Valid charitable credentials and a three-year history of 990 forms are verified using Guide Star Charity Check, a comprehensive due diligence tool.

Due to the high volume of inquiries, the Change Happens Foundation is unable to respond to every submission. The Change Happens Foundation grant process is very competitive, with only a few proposals leading to grant awards, and even fewer with continued funding.


The Change Happens Foundation does NOT approve grants for:

  • Charities based outside of the United States
  • Faith-based organizations or religious activities
  • Third-party sponsorships
  • Endowments
  • Scholarships
  • Individuals
  • Special events

Additional Guidelines

  • Projects of organizations whose policies or practices discriminate on the basis of ethnic origin, gender, race, religion, or sexual orientation will not be considered.
  • University-based research projects must provide full contact information for a Development Officer at the school’s fundraising foundation.
  • Organizations may not have concurrent grants with the Change Happens Foundation.
  • Previous grantees should not submit a Letter of Inquiry or grant proposal without being invited to do so. For more information, visit our Current & Past Grantees page.
  • Grantseekers for whom a previous Letter of Inquiry was declined should not submit another Letter of Inquiry.

Indirect Cost Policy

Grants from the Change Happens Foundation do not cover processing fees, fiscal sponsor fees or indirect costs of any kind. Grantees will need to use other resources to cover costs not directly related to the restricted grant’s specific purpose.