Our Grantmaking Philosophy

At BCF, we believe that opportunities to access grants should be made available to all potential grantseekers on equal terms.  We also want to make the grant application process as efficient as possible.

We are in the process of piloting the GIVEBERMUDA.org online grant application tool to streamlining the application process and to improve the consistency of application information and reportingClick here for more information.

Grantmaking Guidelines


The Bermuda Foundation’s (BCF) grant-making programmes focus on results. The BCF launched its first Vital Signs® report in 2017. The results are gradually being incorporated into the foundation’s grantmaking scheme. Click here to see the report. In addition to the Vital Signs® priority areas, it’s portfolio of funds are categorized in five areas, wide in breadth, but increasingly specific to programme outcomes.

The BCF’s grantmaking has shifted in response to the pandemic, a necessary crisis response and emerging needs as we negotiate the post-pandemic state of affairs.

As funding needs emerged, we established community impact funds to address them. This approach resulted in the Emergency, Nonprofit Stabilisation, Hardship and Covid-19 Emergency Phase II funds. These funds are spend-out funds and may be reactivated as needed.

The descriptions and focus for each of these funds can be found in the application summaries. Read about funding opportunities at BCF

Our grants strategy puts the emphasis on what difference each grant will make.

Guidance for applicants to the BCF Annual Competitive Grant

  • BCF will only fund groups located in Bermuda and with a local committee and bank account.
  • In addition to the Fund purposes outlined by Donor Fund Holders at BCF, Grantseekers should check the community foundation's current funding priorities.
  • A single application for funding should be made where our priorities match your work plan for the year.
  • An application can be submitted at any time during the year.
  • Normally organisations will hold no more than one live grant at a time and will be restricted to two grants within the Community Foundation's financial year -- July 1 - June 30.
  • The grant assessment process will take into consideration the organization’s resources and its access to other funds.

Online Grant Applications

  • Those seeking grant funding from BCF should apply using the online application process. The application process has two main parts: organisational information and grant-specific information.
  • The grantseeker is required to submit (within time period specified) an application for the specific grant opportunity along with the additional documentation requested.
  • Applications will not be considered by BCF until the completed application and supporting documentation have been received.

What We Will Fund:

BCF will consider requests for funding for community-based. BCF acknowledges the broad spectrum of activity that community development encapsulates and will consider each initiative on its merits.  Please note that funds available are limited and where necessary, applications will be prioritized on relative match to funding areas listed below.

Current priority funding areas:

  • Projects that will result in a more inclusive and resilient community
  • Community-based projects that promote participation and well-being
  • Projects that support skill development and self-help amongst disenfranchised groups
  • Projects that work to enhance the involvement of marginalised groups of young people
  • Community environmental initiatives
  • Work that enhances active ageing and protection of the rights of children,  seniors, people with disabilities
  • Initiatives that address social isolation (Feeding programmes, Seniors Programmes)
  • Projects that promote health and well-being by addressing specific issues
  • Community arts that promote participation
  • Projects that can increase learning and that can influence policy
  • Work in notably deprived areas of Bermuda
  • Organisation working in the fields of human rights
  • The promotion of policies that protect or promote issues impacting disadvantaged, disenfranchised or excluded groups of people, including capacity building

What We Will Not Fund: 

  • Grantseekers not based in Bermuda, international charities and appeals (this policy excludes donor-advised recommendations to international charities)
  • Activities that duplicate existing services & substitution for statutory funding
  • Retrospective funding
  • Capital build projects and large equipment purchases
  • Promotion of religion or party political activity. No support from BCF central or impact funds will be extended to religious activities or programmes that serve, or appear to serve, specific religious groups or denominations. However, if a proposal submitted by a church-based or similar organisation falls within programme guidelines and is intended to serve as broad a segment of the community as a comparable non-religious organisation, we will consider the request on the same basis as other requests.
  • Trips outside Bermuda, holidays, residential costs
  • Dinners, fund-raising promotions or other ticketed events
  • Shopping trips, parties or food (except where food forms a small but essential part of a project)
  • Individuals (unless a new fund is specifically aimed at helping individuals)
  • Organizations that did not comply with reporting requirements of previous grant aid.

Please note: Applications should not be duplicated and should be created by the named grantseeker. Please note that applications that are evidently duplicated or that have not been created by the named applicant organization may not be considered by a committee.

Grant ranges:

Grants will range from $500 - $10,000 - though for the greater part they will not exceed $5,000. In specific programmes there may occasionally be higher amounts awarded.

Assessment Process 

  • Grantseekers should ensure that grant applications are received well in advance of the planned activity to allow adequate time for processing.
  • Grant applications will have a turnaround time of around 6 -12 weeks
  • Applications will be assessed by Community Foundation grant review representatives
  • During grant assessment the applicant may be contacted by telephone for clarification of particular aspects of the applications.
  • Assessment of applications over $5,000 may include on-site interview.
  • Recommendations will be considered by the Board of Directors and/or upon the recommendation of an Advisory Committee.
  • The decision of BCF’s Board of Directors is final.
  • Grantseekers will be informed in writing of the outcome of their application.
  • Feedback may be provided to unsuccessful grantseekers to maximize learning from the experience. Grants staff may refer an application back to an Advisory Committee if appropriate. 

Successful Grant Grantseekers 

  • Will receive a Letter of Commitment, which sets out the terms of a grant agreement - some may have conditions attached. 
  • Will be advised of the terms of the funding. 
  • Grants will be paid upon receipt of the appropriately signed Commitment Letter and completed Bank Details Form, subject to any conditions of grant being met. 
  • For grants up to $5,000, 100% of grant will be advanced. Larger grants may be paid out at 75% and the balance released upon receipt of a completed Project Impact Form and/or Financial Report. 
  • Subsequent grants of all levels will only be considered if all previous monitoring and reporting is in place. 
  • Grantees may be invited to participate in a further workshop during the course of the delivery of their project to share their experience / learn from others regarding achieving the objectives of their project.
  • Any issues relating to the delivery of the project need to be reported to BCF.
  • All requests for project or budget changes must be made to BCF in writing.

To begin the grant application process, click here.

For Further information contact: GiveBermuda@bcf.org.