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Community Assist Grants

2022-23 Grant Cycle Opens April 15

Whether you are seeking program/organization amplification, volunteer support, monetary donations, or any other type of partnership, non-profits must apply for a Community Assist Grant as the first step to establish a relationship with the Sharks Foundation. To keep the process unbiased, the Sharks Foundation will not host meetings with non-profits while the grant cycle is open to discuss a non-profit's program or project idea - you may reach out to us via email for specific application questions.

Application Instructions:

Read Before Applying: 

  • Once you begin the online application your work cannot be saved - do not skip steps 2 and 3 in the instructions above
  • Each organization can submit one grant application per cycle 
  • Do not wait! The Sharks Foundation will not extend the application deadline under any circumstance.
  • Allow ample time in the event you experience technical or other difficulties with the application process
  • An application will be deemed ineligible if it is incomplete, incorrectly formatted, not submitted by the deadline, submitted by an organization that does not qualify per the outlined funding priorities 
  • You must hit the "submit" button on the online application before the deadline 

Please note: Due to the large number of grant applications we receive, each non-profit should understand that there is only so much funding the Sharks Foundation has available to allocate and that we cannot fund every request. We appreciate and respect all the important work being done to better our community. All non-profits that submit an application will be kept on our preferred partner list for the year and will be notified of other opportunities as they arise.

The Sharks Foundation accepts applications for partnership through program funding and project grants that align with our focal areas of giving. We dedicate a month to honor and celebrate each focal area through our annual Giving Campaign.

Campaign Months/Giving Campaign:

  • September: Latinx and Hispanic Heritage Month
    • Celebrating the history and culture of the Latinx and Hispanic communities, support of the Latinx and Hispanic community
  • October: Healthy Living Month
    • Fitness, wellness, medical (non-cancer) and mental health
  • November: Hockey Fights Cancer
    • Cancer-related patient care, support services, survivor programs 
  • December: Holiday Assist Month
    • Basic human services, food, clothing, shelter, holiday programs
  • January: Education Month
    • Pre-K thru college, literacy, STEM, music/arts, programs outside school
  • February: Black History Month
    • Education, support services, anti-racism work, honoring important people and events in black history, etc. 
  • March: Equality Month
    • In line with the leaguewide principle that Hockey is for Everyone, this campaign focuses on driving positive social change and fostering more inclusive communities by supporting non-profits focused on the advancement of diversity, equity and inclusion for all, such as, but not limited to, female mentorship and women/girl empowerment, LGBTQIA+, BIPOC, disabled and special needs communities. While we recognize and prioritize Equality and the Hockey is For Everyone Initiative all year, we take the month of March to highlight and celebrate the work. 
  • April: Environmental Awareness Month
    • Beautification, sustainability, recycling, science, world health
  • May: Asian and Pacific Islander Heritage Month
    • Celebrating Asian and Pacific Islanders, anti-AAPI violence, and support of the API community
  • June: Pride Month
    • Equal justice and opportunity for the LGBTQIA+ community, supporting awareness, history, and allyship

When you apply for a Community Assist Grant, you are applying to become a partner of the Sharks Foundation. We pride ourselves on creating deep and meaningful relationships with our non-profit partners and therefore, are looking for reciprocal, multifaceted partnership with non-profits. A big component of these partnerships is the opportunity to apply for funding with us through either a Program or Project Grant. 

Difference Between Program Funding and Project Grants

Program Funding:

Programs are annually run and have set parameters; usually a subdivision of a non-profit, it is a service they provide. Program examples (not limited to):

  • Afterschool services 
  • Mentorship programs
  • Reading assistance 
  • Environmental sustainability 

Program grants can range from $2,000-$15,000+. When a non-profit applies for program funding, they are putting their name in the running for various fundraising opportunities provided by the Sharks Foundation during the course of the year. The Sharks Foundation will assign the type of funding to a non-profit based on recommendations from the grant review committee and the Foundation's discretion. Please do not request a specific type of funding opportunity in your application. Non-profits selected for funding will be designated one of the avenues below as determined by the Sharks Foundation:

50/50 Raffle: Proceeds from a 50/50 Raffle can range anywhere from $3,000-$10,000+. If you are chosen as a beneficiary, the raffle will take place at a Sharks home game during the month for which focal area you are applying for (ie: if you applied under the Hockey Fights Cancer focus and have been selected, your organization would be a beneficiary of one of the raffles taking place in November). To receive 50/50 funding, your non-profit organization must have a California chapter and ideally, be able to provide 5-10 volunteers to assist sellers and amplify your mission on your assigned game date. Click here to learn more about the 50/50 Raffle. 

Fundraisers: Auctions, Mystery Pucks, Foundation events, etc. Click here to learn about Sharks Foundation fundraisers. 

Project Grants:

A project is typically a one-time execution and one-time cost. Examples (not limited to):

  • Clothing or food packing/distribution 
  • Holiday gift giving 
  • Beautification/clean-up project
  • Upgrades to an existing structure or installation of a new structure
  • Bike build
  • Vehicle retrofitting 
  • Home renovation

The Sharks Foundation provides project grants up to $200,000. If you apply under this category, you must provide a budget and timeline that will become contractually binding if your project is approved. Proposals should offer a volunteer opportunity for Sharks staff/partners to be involved. The volunteer opportunity, groundbreaking date, or project completion date must fall within the campaign month for which focal area you are applying.If you are interested in a playground build, please apply with our community partner KABOOM! by clicking here. 

Funding Priorities:

The Sharks Foundation provides funding to organizations that support youth and families, with special emphasis on at-risk and underrepresented populations. 

The Sharks Foundation will not support: 

  • General operating deficits
  • Sponsorships of fundraisers of any kind, tradeshows, festivals, workshops, etc. 
  • Endowments or reserve funds 
  • PTAs, booster clubs, donations to individuals
  • Organizations outside the Bay Area that cannot keep 51% or more of funding in the Bay Area

Organization Eligibility - to qualify for a grant an organization must: 

  • Be a public, 501(c)(3) tax-exempt non-profit organization in good standing with the Internal Revenue Service for a minimum of 5 years
  • A program must be in existence for a minimum of 3 years
  • Provide services to children/families in need within the Bay Area
  • Be available for a site visit if selected as a beneficiary
  • Adhere to all deadlines and application requirements

Application Eligibility - to qualify for a grant an application must: 

  • Fall under one of the focus areas: Latinx and Hispanic Heritage, Healthy Living, Hockey Fights Cancer, Holiday Assist, Education, Black History, Equality, Environmental Awareness, Asian and Pacific Islander Heritage or Pride
  • 100% of grant funding received from the Sharks Foundation are used for the exclusive benefit of youth or youth and their families
  • 51% of the funding received must directly benefit youth/families in the Bay Area
  • Funding must be applied to the costs associated with a specific programming element of the applying organization or the project you are applying for
  • Funding must be used by July 1, 2023 

Activation - provide opportunities/ideas on the partnership:

  • The Sharks Foundation continually seeks deep and impactful relationships with the non-profits we support; as such, there should be an activation component within the campaign month under which you are applying between your organization and the Sharks Foundation
  • An activation component should be well thought out, creative/unique and multifaceted (ie: more than a check presentation) - how can we collaborate to show the community what we have accomplished together? How can we amplify the partnership? How can volunteers from our organization support the work you do? 
  • Non-profits are asked to thoroughly explain their idea(s) in the application narrative


  • June 1 (5 p.m. PST): Deadline to submit online application
  • June-August: Review process
  • September: Applicants notified of status
  • September-June: Funds dispersed; site visits & projects break ground/complete