How to Apply

If you are a non-profit organization with U.S. tax-exempt or non-U.S. charitable status and have never received funding from the Lavelle Fund for the Blind, please complete this questionnaire or click on the Online Application button to the right.

Please note that the Fund no longer accepts proposals or grant reports by mail or email. If you are a current or former grantee, please submit your proposal using our online grants management system. If you are a first-time user or if you need help retrieving your log-in credentials for accessing the Fund’s grants management portal, please contact our office for further assistance.

Grant proposals may be submitted at any time. All proposals submitted to the Fund will be acknowledged. Site visits or meetings are generally scheduled for grant requests that are candidates for Board review. Applicants with questions about the Fund’s grant application or review procedures should feel free to contact the Fund.

For more information, please review our core grantmaking guidelines below.

ChildSight technician fitting young girl with glasses

Courtesy of Helen Keller International

Proposal Guidelines

The Lavelle Fund for the Blind only provides funding to organizations with U.S. 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status or verifiable non-U.S. charitable status (in the case of foreign-based, non-profit organizations without a U.S.-based 501(c)(3) fiscal intermediary).

A complete grant application includes the following components:

Cover Letter

A brief cover letter, on your organization’s letterhead, to be signed by the executive director. The letter should include a one-paragraph summary of the request, including its amount and purpose. It should also indicate the name, phone number and email of the contact person for this proposal, if other than the executive director.

Narrative

Complete responses to the questions in the proposal template in the Fund’s grants management system, CyberGrants, pasted directly into the provided textboxes. (A complete list of these questions appears below.)

Financial Information

Clearly indicate the dates of the financial period(s) covered in each document:

  • Project budget: please include either (a) a complete budget narrative – a line-by-line description of each expense line in the proposed budget or (b) simple annotations beside expense lines that are not self-explanatory. Please list each staff line separately and include the percentage of time to be spent on the project. In the case of project-related capital expenses, please provide professional cost estimates.)
  • The applying organization’s total, current-year operating budget
  • Organization’s two most recent audited financial statements
  • A list of grants awarded (from non-Lavelle sources) in the most recent fiscal year
  • Expected income sources for the project (actual and perspective, including the applying organization’s own in-kind or cash contributions to the project)

Additional Information
  • Organization’s List of Board of Directors (with their professional affiliations)
  • Organization’s IRS Determination Letter (confirming tax-exempt status)

 

Ophthalmologist carrying out low vision exam on elderly man

Courtesy of Lighthouse Guild

 

Narrative Questions

Below is a complete list of the questions included in the online grant proposal application found on the CyberGrants platform. All prospective grantees must create a CyberGrants profile and apply online.

Background

Describe the work of your agency, addressing each of the following:

  1. A brief description of your organization’s history and mission.
  2. The need or problem that your organization works to address and the population that your agency serves, including the population’s visual and other impairments, geographic location, age-range and, if known, socio-economic status, race, and gender.
  3. Recent achievements.
  4. Number of paid full-time staff; number of paid part-time staff; and number of volunteers.
  5. A brief summary of your organization’s key relationships — both formal and informal — with other organizations working to meet the same needs or providing similar services.  Please explain briefly how you differ from these agencies.

Funding Request

Please describe the project for which you seek funding, including:

  1. The project’s goal(s) and objectives. In the case of numbers to be served, please indicate absolute numbers to be served in each grant year rather than the expected percentage increases.
  2. A brief summary of the need or problem that you are seeking to address, including relevant supporting statistics.
  3. The population that you plan to serve and how this population will benefit from the project.  Please indicate the total number of people to be served, their age range, the nature of their visual impairment (and non-visual impairments, if any), and the geographic area from which they will be drawn.
  4. Strategies that you will employ to implement your project.
  5. The names and qualifications of the key people who will be responsible for achieving the anticipated results.
  6. Anticipated timeline for the project.

Evaluation

Please describe the results you expect to achieve under the grant and how you will assess project success.