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Eligible Organizations

Updated in 2023, these guidelines support potential grantseekers in confirming organizational eligibility. We verify eligibility of all applicants returning or new.

If you are unsure of your eligibility, please contact our staff before you apply.

Eligible Organizations must be:

A. Tax Exempt: 501(c)(3) with 509(a)(1) or (2) status. The Foundation cannot make grants to 509(a)(3) organizations.

B. Aligned with Davis Conservation Foundation's Giving Areas
The Davis Conservation Foundation is a public charitable foundation established in 1989 by Phyllis C. Davis and H. Halsey Davis to support protection of the environment and conservation of our natural resources. Eligible organizations must have the primary purpose related to this vision. Factors we consider include applicants' board-approved mission (as documented in bylaws, 990s, strategic plans, etc), and/or the majority of programs and services being dedicated to the primary purpose.

C. Located in a Geographic Priority Area (listed in order of priority): 

  • Northern Forest and Gulf of Maine
  • Northern New England (Maine, NH, VT)
  • Other New England (low priority)
  • Few organizations from outside of New England receive grants. In rare exceptions, projects may be approved if their impact and expenditure of funds will primarily be contained within geographic priority areas.

D. Fiscal Sponsorships: Additional information is required at the time of application. Please contact our team to begin this process early.

E. Returning organizations should confirm:

  • At least 24 months have passed since your last approved grant
  • You have submitted a completion report for your last grant
  • You have read our updated project guidelines around returning/repetitive grant requests


Note for governmental entities

All governmental entities should contact staff to confirm eligibility before applying. The primary mission of the entity must be connected explicitly to the environment and conservation.

Ineligible governmental entities: Cities, Towns, Public schools/RSUs


Ineligible Organizations

The Foundation is Unable to Fund

  • Organizations with a project that aligns with the Foundation, but whose organizational primary mission does not fall within a primary funding category. 
  • Human services/social services organizations
  • Individuals
  • Religious programs
  • Public elementary and secondary schools
  • Outdoor recreation organizations that are not primarily focused on environmental/outdoor stewardship
  • Camps/outdoor recreation programs which receive financial support from a church or other religious organization
  • 509(a)(3) organizations
  • Lobbying