Impact100 Sonoma adopts new grantmaking strategy for 2021

Posted on October 8, 2020 by Sonoma Valley Sun
In 2017, members of Impact100 Sonoma voted to award $100,000 to the Sonoma Land Trust.

Once each year, members of Impact100 Sonoma gather to hear presentations from Sonoma Valley nonprofits, and vote on which ones will receive grants of up to $100,000. The collective-giving organization, founded in 2009, has awarded nearly $2.7 million over the years. But given the financial predicament faced by local charities, that grant-making process will change in 2021.

In response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Impact100 Sonoma ​will instead award “Impetus Grants” of up to $25,000 to nonprofit organizations’ to support them on the road to long-term recovery and resilience. 

The new grantmaking strategy for 2021 evolved from meetings and research that began in May. A task force found that Valley nonprofits will need immediate relief and increased flexibility in order to stretch their funding through 2021. It determined that the Impetus Grants Model would provide the best response to current needs, spread funds for maximum effect, and allow for flexibility as conditions evolve. 

The Impetus Grants will be awarded for 2021 only, and Impact100 Sonoma members will vote on and award the grants by March 31, 2021. 

Applicants for the Impetus Grants will be required to explain their response to the pandemic and how they have pivoted to fulfill their mission, show financial stability, use the grant funds to build long-term sustainability, and have a plan to demonstrate the impact of the grant funds. 

Additionally, Impact100 Sonoma is committed to reducing the burden on applicants, allowing grantees to adjust their objectives as conditions change, and continuing to trust the Valley’s nonprofits to decide what they need and how to best serve the community in this unprecedented time.

The group has about 300 members, who each join with a $1,000 donation. With its typical annual disbursement, one nonprofit is awarded $100,000 grant. In the spring of 2020, at the outset of the pandemic, suspended its traditional process and instead divided its pool of $303,000 equally among all 23 grant semi-finalists.

Find out more at Impact100 Sonoma.

Sonoma Sun | Sonoma, CA