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Guidelines for Grant Awards

Grants Relating to Safety At Sea

     The Foundation encourages grant applications supporting projects which complement the safe operation of boats, both sail and power. Innovative projects resulting in the development of cost effective personal safety equipment, modified operational and training protocols, and methods to increase crew awareness of the need for continued attention to safety are of particular interest.

Grants Relating to the Environment of the Sea

     The Foundation seeks grant applications in support of projects intended to increase our understanding of the factors affecting the marine environment both natural and man-made and the best ways to minimize adverse impacts associated with small boat operations. Such efforts might include technologies facilitating "green boats", efforts to conserve coastal and estuarine land, and educational efforts directed at improved stewardship of our oceans and navigable lakes.

General Considerations

     So that the impact of its grants can be measured and meaningfully assessed, the Foundation favors well-defined, discrete projects. Requests intended to provide support of an organization's general operating budget generally receive lower priority ranking.

     For similar reasons, the Foundation prefers that its grants fund projects, either in their entirety or in substantial part, rather than a small part of a large-budget undertaking.. 

     Bonnell Cove is not a large Foundation and its grants are generally limited to approximately to $10,000 or less. While we accept and will consider application from non-profits of any size, we wish our grants to be impactful to the recipients. For this reason, we favor organizations which lack substantial operating budgets.

Application Procedures

     All applicants must be tax-exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code and must be classified as "not a private foundation" under Section 509(a). Applications must include the following:

      A. General:

          The Bonnell Cove Foundation Grant Summary Form, which briefly describes the organization, the project and its costs..

     B. The Organization:

          1. A brief history of the organization and its mission, including major accomplishments;

          2. A description of the services the organization provides and the persons served, where appropriate;

          3. A list of the organization's Board of Directors and top staff members, including resumes of the Chair, Executive Director, President or equivalent positions;

          4. Evidence of IRS tax-exempt status;

     C. The Project:

This to include:

          1. A detailed description of the project, its budget, intended purposes and beneficiaries, the potential impact of the project and the qualifications of personnel with major project responsibilities;

          2. A discussion justifying the amount requested, including strategies for obtaining additional funds from other sources and a statement of funds which have been received or pledged. Applicants are asked to indicate how the major elements of expenses were estimated, over what period of time the funds are to be spent and how the project will be continued and supported after the requested grant period.

          3. The method and criteria of assessing the project's effectiveness for purposes of both internal evaluation and for reporting to the Foundation..

     Proposal Deadlines

          The Foundation's Board meets twice annually - in March and October - to consider grant proposals. Proposal deadlines are February 1 for the March meeting and September 1 for the October meeting. Proposals received after the deadlines will be reviewed during the following funding cycle. Applicants will be notified by letter  of the Board's decision. Applications should be submitted to: Secretary, Bonnell Cove Foundation, 1 Scott Lane, Mystic, CT 06355. Applicants are asked to submit their grant packages by mail. However, the Grant Summary Form may be submitted by email at

     Post-Grant Reporting

          Grantees are expected to submit a report to the Foundation on the progress of the program or project  and the use of the funds granted within one year of the date of the grant and annually thereafter until the project has been completed..

     Grant Summary Form