Mini Grant Frequently Asked Questions#
1. Can my neighborhood or small community nonprofit apply for more than one grant per year?
Yes. Your neighborhood or small community nonprofit can apply more than once in a calendar year.
2. Is there a maximum amount of funding that my neighborhood/small community nonpforit can be awarded in a year?
No. There are no limits to applying for mini grant funds -- however, the City reserves the right to award funds equitably and fund previously unfunded neighborhoods and projects. The City also reserves the right to deny funding to a repeat grantee in order to award money to a new grantee.
3. How much are typical mini grant awards?
Typical award amounts range from approximately $150 to $1000, depending on the scope of the project or activity and the number of participants involved. *Special grant rounds may have different award amounts.
4. Can I buy anything I want with the mini grant funds?
No. The City of Fort Collins is dedicated to sustainable practices. Mini grant dollars cannot be spent on disposable items (like plastic or paper tablecloths, paper decorations, bottled water, etc.). *Personal protective equipment (face masks, hand sanitizer) is an allowable use of grant dollars.
Also, mini grant dollars cannot be spent on alcohol or marijuana purchases, political campaigning, HOA business expenses, donations to charitable organizations, fundraising efforts, or improvements to private property.
Grant funds may only be used to pay for expenses listed in grant application and approved by grant committee.
5. How can I use my mini grant dollars?
2021 mini grants focus on resilience and sustainability. How are you and your community creating connection with this grant award? What skill can you leverage to help your neighborhood? For example, would a grant for a lawnmower help you cut grass for elderly neighbors or persons with disability?
6. Does my neighborhood have to be in the Sustainable Neighborhood Program to be awarded funding?
No. Your neighborhood does not need to participate in the program to receive grant dollars.
7. How do I receive the grant funds?
You can choose to receive the funds before the event/activity or as a reimbursement. In either case, you will need to complete paperwork and submit your receipts.
8. How are applications evaluated?
Applications will earn points for:
- focusing on resilience and sustainability
- conducting effective outreach
- explaining the potential outcomes of the activity/event
- what in-kind efforts are made
Consideration will be given to:
- new applicants
- neighborhoods that are in the Sustainable Neighborhood program
- neighborhoods/small nonprofits that continue to engage and grow with the City
- efforts made to serve an underserved community
9. How will we know if our application is approved for funding?
Award notification will come via email.
10. What happens after receiving the award?
If your application is approved for funding, you will have to:
- sign a contract
- complete a W-9 form
- submit your receipts
- submit a sign-in sheet from activity/event
- complete an evaluation
11. Do I have to complete a W-9 to receive the grant award?
A Form W-9 must be submitted to Neighborhood Services if your grant application receives approval. Applicants will need to complete and submit the form even if they have submitted one in the past. This is for City of Fort Collins tax purposes only. It is not necessary to report this on a tax return as these funds are not considered income. (***Awards over $600 may be taxed.***)
12. What if I don’t want to use my personal information on the W-9?
If you prefer, you could provide us with the tax information for the HOA. The address on the W-9 and the entity (personal, HOA, or other) that completes the W-9 is to whom the check will be written and the location to which the check will be mailed. There will be no exceptions to this standard. Previous W-9 forms will not be adequate for this requirement.
13. How do I submit my receipts?
Scan them and email them to firstname.lastname@example.org
14. When must I submit my receipts?
Please submit them within two weeks of your activity or event. Failure to submit them in a timely manner could result in loss of funding/reimbursement and/or loss of future grant awarding.
15. Is there an evaluation to complete?
Yes! Please complete an evaluation here.
16. Do I need a special event permit?
Special event permits are required for all events involving street closure. Special event permits typically require six (6) weeks for approval. Forms are available here: https://specialevents.fcgov.com/
17. Can the neighborhood event be on private property?
Signed permission is required if the event is held on private property. Signatures will be collected after application has been reviewed and approved for funding.
18. Could my neighborhood or small community nonprofit receive a grant for an activity or event that happened in the past?
19. Can my neighborhood or small community nonprofit submit a late application?
No. Late applications will not be considered.
20. Can City of Fort Collins employees apply for these mini grants?
Grant funds cannot be paid to City of Fort Collins employees.
21. Can residents outside of the City limits apply for these mini grants?
No. These mini grants can only be accessed by residents within City of Fort Collins boundaries. *Special grant rounds and collaborations will open funding to residents in the Growth Management Area.
22. Can you share an example of a strong application?
Yes. Reviewers were impressed by this completed application. (Personal identifiers have been removed.)