Health Care Program Area 2020 Grant Guidelines

In 2020, the Foundation will continue to be intentional in supporting purposeful pathways to build stronger communities. Of particular importance is how critical the provision of health care and behavioral health is to life outcomes of individuals, and how often this is beyond the control of those most impacted.

Poor health is often the result of lower use of health care by individuals who are often uninsured or under-insured. As an example, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2018 Health-United States report, in 2017, more than one-quarter of Hispanic adults (27.5%) aged 18–64 were uninsured, which was higher than that for non-Hispanic white (8.5%), non-Hispanic black (14.0%), and non-Hispanic Asian (7.4%) adults. Equally, Hispanic children (7.7%) were more likely to be uninsured than non-Hispanic white (4.1%), non-Hispanic black (4.0%), and non-Hispanic Asian (3.8%) children. It is then not surprising,  as the report indicates, that in 2017, 16.2% of adults living below 100% and 15.3% of adults living at 100%–199% of the poverty level delayed or did not receive needed medical care due to cost compared with 5.1% of those living at or above 400% of the poverty level. Similarly, according to this same report, 11.9% of adults living below 100% and 11.6% of adults living at 100%–199% of the poverty level did not receive needed prescription drugs due to cost compared with 2.7% of those at or above 400% of the poverty level. Locally, Cottage Health, 2019 Community Health Needs Assessment Report indicates that 18% of survey respondents had not seen a doctor over the last 12 months due to cost. This was an increase from 7% who indicated this in 2016. Similarly there was an increase from 2016 to 2019 in the percent of survey respondents that indicated that they had skipped medications in the past 12 months due to cost from 8% in 2016 to 9.5% in 2019.

In order to more adequately address the different approaches required by critical areas of human need, the Santa Barbara Foundation has established four separate program areas of funding; health care, behavioral health, food, and shelter & safety. Applicants will be required to select the program area that represents the central tenet of the mission of the organization that is applying for funding. Organizations are not eligible to apply to more than one program area.



Grants will be available to nonprofit organizations directly providing health care programs. Funding can be used for operating expenses and/or costs related to sustaining or expanding service delivery programs to meet demonstrated demand.

In summary, funded organizations will:

  • be providing direct services to address health care
  • be well-managed, financially viable, and operate effective programs that primarily serve the needs of poor and underserved communities
  • have developed short-term and long-term strategies for addressing identified organizational needs



Priority will be given to organizations that:

  • demonstrate sustained and/or increased demand for health care services
  • are taking steps to sustain or expand organizational capacity to address demand for services
  • provide holistic approaches to serving clients, undertaken by the agency itself or in partnership with others
  • demonstrate cultural competence among volunteers, staff, and board members for the communities served
  • are addressing barriers that prevent access to services
  • are developing strategies to address the root causes of health care issues


Funding Amounts and Duration

The maximum award for Health Care grants is $50,000. The grant review panel may reduce or increase award amounts at its discretion. The grant period is up to one year from the award date. As a final report for this work, we are planning on hosting a convening with other recipients of the program area to learn and share your work in 2021.

Grant Limitations

Grants in the Health Care program areas are not intended for:

  • services and programs that are not directly providing services to address health care
  • solely food, shelter & safety, or behavioral health (in this grant cycle.)
  • clothing or transportation
  • individuals

Please visit the Eligibility Criteria & FAQs for a complete list of what the Foundation does not fund.


Eligibility Requirements

  • Grants are available to organizations serving all regions of Santa Barbara C
  • Organizations must be certified as tax exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code or use a fiscal sponsor with 501(c)(3) tax status. Applications that do not contain a valid EIN (tax ID) number will not be considered. Organizations using a fiscal sponsor must review the Eligibility Criteria & FAQs for additional information and instructions.


ONLINE Application Process

Santa Barbara Foundation utilizes an online application. Please follow the instructions below to access, complete and submit your application to the foundation.

  • To apply, go to If you do not already have a log-in for this platform, please proceed to the next steps.
  • On the Welcome to the Santa Barbara Foundation Grants Portal page, click on “Register” and complete the form to create an account for the Grants Portal. You will be asked to furnish an email address, create a password and state the name of your organization. We advise using a perpetual email address (such as or so that the organization’s profile is not exclusively linked to one individual’s email address.
  • IMPORTANT – You will receive an email confirming that your account is active and you will then be able to complete and submit a grant application. Please take this timing into consideration when reviewing application deadlines as you must allow time for your account to be created prior to submitting an application before the deadline. (If you are establishing an account on Friday, the registration confirmation will occur on the following Monday.)
  • Once your account has been confirmed, you may login and complete the grant application.
  • Save your work often and log out at any time.
  • To access the partially completed application again, you will need to log into the account you created to access the grant application.


Important Dates

March 9, 2020 Application Deadline
August, 2020 Funds Awarded


Contact Information

For questions regarding the Health Care program area and funding eligibility, please contact Jenny Bruell, Community Grants Program Manager, or (805) 880-9390.

For technical assistance, please contact Sydney Casler, Community Grants Program Associate, (805) 963-1873 or