Overview

Overview

Overview 

The Char and Chuck Fowler Family Foundation (CCFFF) is dedicated to improving people’s lives through the arts, criminal justice, AYA cancer support, reproductive health, and environmental action. The foundation and its trustees have provided millions of dollars in funding for Northeast Ohio nonprofit organizations since 2001.

The Char and Chuck Fowler Family Foundation supports tax-exempt, 501(c)(3) organizations. The Foundation typically limits awarding of grants to one per 12 month period, per organization.

To be eligible for support, an organization must be:

  • 501(c)(3) tax-exempt or operate under the fiscal sponsorship of a tax-exempt nonprofit
  • Consistent with one or more of our grantmaking focus areas
  • Operated and organized so that it does not discriminate in the hiring of staff or provision of services on the basis of race, religion, gender or gender identity, sexual orientation, age, national origin or disability

Organizations and projects most aligned with our priorities will: 

  • Demonstrate efforts to achieve inclusive and equitable programming in their work and within the organization.
  • Include stakeholders in relevant aspects of their work and decision-making and elevate existing community assets whenever possible.
  • Incorporate racial justice and equity in their day-to-day operations.
  • Understand the importance of advocacy and policy change to take a systemic approach to promoting justice.
  • Demonstrate the uniqueness of their specific organization’s work in light of the larger landscape.  We welcome and prioritize innovation.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the intersectional nature of social problems in the area and take a root-causes approach to addressing them.

Success is not the only outcome for which we are hoping.  We value learning and bravery in innovation, as they, too, are accomplishments!

We will prioritize applicants that can demonstrate a thoughtful, inclusive and equitable approach to their work and involvement within the communities they serve.

Day-to-day operations are vital to the programming that our grantees deliver.  Therefore, we encourage requests for general operating support to advance the work of your organization.

Although we encourage operating support grants, we recognize that you know best what types of funds you need. That being said, we award grants for all of the following purposes:

  • Operating support (encouraged!)
  • Programmatic support
  • Advocacy
  • Capacity building – for both staff and board
  • Capital support – on a limited basis

We recognize that multi-year support allows organizations to better plan for their future and provides a level of long-term stability in their programming.  Prior permission is not required to submit a multi-year request. Although our own budget may limit the number of multi-year grants we can approve each year, we will work with our grantees to find a grant structure that works for both of us.  We consider this a partnership and we want to work together for the benefit of our community.

We will not fund organizations that:

  • Do not provide services to Northeast Ohio, or whose missions fall outside of our focus areas.
  • Have sectarian religious activity as a requirement for receipt of their programming
  • Have foreign operations or expenditures
  • Are fraternal societies
  • Are local or national offices of organizations whose stated purpose is to combat a particular disease or family of diseases, other than adolescent and young adult cancer
  • Are private foundations or public charities with a non-private foundation status of 509(a)(3).  If you are unsure of your 509(a) status, please consult your tax adviser

In addition, we will not consider requests for:

  • Individual scholarships, even if through an otherwise qualified organization
  • Political campaigns or partisan lobbying
  • Grants to individuals


Our grantees serve residents of Northeast Ohio, generally those residing in Cuyahoga and Lorain Counties. Requests from organizations that are located outside this area, yet serve the communities within these boundaries, may be considered.

Download Grantmaking Overview