A coordinated and NIMBLE funding approach

Oregon Immigrant and Refugee Funders Collaborative

The Oregon Immigrant and Refugee Funders Collaborative is a coordinated and nimble funding approach to address emerging, urgent issues impacting immigrants and refugees across the state. (Photo: John Rudoff/Polaris Images)

Immigrants and refugees make significant contributions to this state. According to an Oregon Center for Public Policy report released in 2016, undocumented Oregonians paid roughly $81 million in taxes to help fund schools and other public services that strengthen Oregon’s economy, through property taxes, personal income taxes, and sales and excise taxes.  Economic mobility and social inclusion for newcomers and their children builds communities that are stronger economically and more inclusive socially and culturally.

The Oregon Immigrant and Refugee Funders Collaborative, a partnership between The Collins FoundationMRG FoundationOregon Community Foundation, Pride Foundation and Meyer, establishes a coordinated and nimble funding approach to address emerging and urgent issues impacting immigrants and refugees across the state, and supports local organizations responding to these issues.

 

The OIRFC considers application requests using various methods: a pooled fund, a combination of pooled and aligned funds, or aligned funds only but always in general alignment with eligible areas of support described in this collaborative framework. 

For Meyer applicants: We welcome organizations whose activities relate to the impact anti-immigrant policies have on immigrant and refugee communities to apply to the Oregon Immigrant and Refugee Funders Collaborative. Organizations that have been funded, are currently funded, or may be funded by the OIRFC that have work that falls outside of the collaborative's funding scope (e.g. organizational capacity building for strengthening infrastructure, capital construction, project work not related to OIRFC scope) may apply through Meyer’s Annual Funding Opportunity to whichever portfolio best relates to their proposed work, (Building Community, Equitable Education, Healthy Environment, Housing Opportunities). If your organization has an existing grant award through the Oregon Immigrant and Refugee Funders Collaborative, this should be noted in any new application. Finally, we recommend you contact a staff person from the corresponding portfolio area to discuss your project if you have questions or need further clarification about whether your proposed work is eligible for our funding areas.

Organizations that have an active multi-year grant through a previous Meyer Annual Funding Opportunity are not eligible to apply for a 2018 Annual Funding Opportunity grant, except in specific cases. For more information, please see the Eligibility and Alignment section at www.mmt.org/apply/applicant-resources or contact your assigned Meyer program staff.

To apply, please read the Funders Collaborative Scope Process, then download and fill out the short, common application form, available here as a Word document.  View a list of grants awarded made by Meyer through the collaborative, here.

Funding Structure and Process

“No Wrong Door”

Nonprofit and community groups are encouraged to reach out to any of the representatives from each of the participating funders by email or by telephone. Representatives from participating funders communicate with each other and make any information and document available to the rest of the representatives. Funders will also coordinate their efforts when communicating and/or requesting information from community groups to lessen the burden on answering to different people on similar issues.

Shared Application and Reporting

The funders collaborative share a common application form (a downloadable word document). A submitted application does not guarantee a grant award. Someone from the collaborative may contact the applicant for additional questions as needed or required. At the end of the grant period, grantee submits one report in a format supplied by the collaborative.

Funding process. Application review. Reporting

The collaborative does not have established funding cycles or a formal RFP (Request for Proposals) process. The intent is to offer a nimble and responsive way that reduces the wait time for grantees. The collaborative member who receives the application makes it available to other members for joint review and discussion. If additional clarifying questions arise, a member of the collaborative contacts the applicant to secure the answers. The members may choose to fund an application using various methods: a pooled fund, a combination of pooled and aligned funds, or aligned funds only. An applicant may receive one grant check if funding is provided through a pooled fund, or separate checks and letters of award if multiple funders are supporting the project. If a project is supported by multiple funders applicant may submit only one report as directed by the collaborative.

Funding Criteria

The collaborative funders will consider applications from eligible 501 (c) (3) organizations or have a qualified fiscal sponsor. The collaborative will consider and give priority to proposals for projects and programs that directly address the impact of policies and actions implemented after November 2016. For other projects serving immigrants and refugees, applicants are encouraged to contact each of the funders separately. Funding will cover proposed activities for a 12-month period. An organization may submit only one application within a 12-month period. A proposal of $50,000 or more to this collaborative is considered a large request. Any collaborative member may choose to fund an application outside the parameters of the eligibility requirements set forth in this document. Members of this collaborative may also choose to fund the applicant organization for another project within the same time period.

Funding Eligibility – what we’ll fund (areas of interest)

Collectively the funders collaborative will consider requests for projects that provide:

  • Legal information/advice, services and representation for immigrants and refugees

  • Outreach and education about policies, programs, services, and preparedness

  • Information gathering, research and analysis on immigration and refugee issues

  • Basic human needs for immigrants and refugees

  • Community organizing, civic engagement and advocacy

Individually, any collaborative member may choose to invest more in some areas than others, but the response to the organizations and community will be coordinated.


Critical Response Fund

The funders collaborative may consider small requests that need a quick turn-around time. The collaborative has established a small fund to respond to critical needs. Broadly defined, critical response means a response needed within 24-48 hours, for small, planned or unanticipated expenses related to funding eligible activities. This may include materials and expenses for education and outreach, training and capacity fees. Requests under this fund cannot exceed $4,000.

 

Participating Funders

The Collins Foundation | Email: Cynthia Addams, caddams [at] collinsfoundation.org

Meyer Memorial Trust | Email: Sally Yee, sally [at] mmt.org

MRG Foundation | Email: Esther Kim, esther [at] mrgf.org

The Oregon Community Foundation | Email: Roberto Franco, rfranco [at] oregoncf.org

Pride Foundation | Email: Katie Carter, katie [at] pridefoundation.org