Local Grants

Kern Community Foundation

Kern Community Foundation offers competitive grant opportunities at different times throughout the year. View our page for more information: kernfoundation.org/grants

Bank of the Sierra

Bank of the Sierra accepts grant applications during four quarterly cycles every year. Their grant applications are focused on:

  1. Organizations that demonstrate their plans to help those affected by COVID-19
  2. Programs that provide children, individuals, and families with community services that solve medical health and well-being problems
  3.  Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks and other agencies that work to preserve the Sierras
  4. Schools and community-based nonprofit organizations that enhance the educational development of children.

View their website for more information: bankofthesierra.com/resources/sierra-grant-program.

Dignity Health

The Community Grants Program’s funding criteria help to ensure that its charitable resources address significant health needs in ways that demonstrate accountability for impact.

NOTE: This page will be updated in May 2021 with the application schedule and fact sheets for grants to be awarded for 2022. View information on past grants and general material here: dignityhealth.org/about-us/community-health/grant-programs/community-grants.

First 5 Kern

Funded Programs

First 5 Kern uses tobacco tax funds – passed in 1998 by voters as Proposition 10 – to support early childhood programs in three focus categories: health and wellness; early childcare and education; parent education and support services. All coordination within First 5 Kern’s realm of influence emphasizes the integration of services within communities. Since 1998, First 5 Kern has put over $200 million back into Kern County through Prop 10 dollars.

Please note that our current cycle for funding of this kind runs through June, 2025. For a list of currently funded programs, visit: first5kern.org/programs-and-initiatives/funded-programs.

Community Support

Each year, First 5 Kern grants fiscal support to local organizations that work to improve the lives of the youngest in our county. Events like fundraising dinners, educational conferences, community health fairs, family events, and supply giveaways (such as clothing or car seats) are great ways to show your support for young children and their families and may be eligible to receive funding.

For details on how to request funding, visit: first5kern.org/community-event-support. Your event must demonstrate a targeted approach to benefit children 0-5 and their families. All requests for funding of this kind have a maximum award of $5,000.

Give Big Kern

Give Big Kern is observed on the first Tuesday in May as “One day to celebrate the giving spirit of Kern County.” It provides a great opportunity for Kern’s generous community to come together to raise dollars and volunteer hours for local nonprofits through online crowdfunding and pledges. In preparation for Give Big Kern, participating nonprofits receive training on online fundraising, marketing, social media, board engagement, donor cultivation and more. Thanks to local corporate sponsorships, cash prizes are awarded to top performing nonprofits. Since its launch by host agency Kern Community Foundation in 2016, Give Big Kern has helped raise more than $1.7 million from thousands of community members to benefit hard-working local charities. In 2019 and 2020, Give Big Kern received our community’s distinguished Beautiful Bakersfield Award for helping to create “A Better Bakersfield”! Find out more about Giver Big Kern by visiting the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page of the Give Big Kern website.

Junior League of Bakersfield

Every year, the Junior League of Bakersfield (JLB) gives out up to $5,000 each to various Kern County non-profits in the form of Enabling and Project grants.  Project and Enabling Fund Grants are awarded to non-profit community organizations for the purpose of improving the welfare of women and children in Kern County. 

NOTE: At this time, the Junior League of Bakersfield is not accepting applications.  Please check back in the future for the dates of their next application cycle: jlbakersfield.org/grants.

Kaiser Permanente

Kaiser Permanente provides qualified nonprofit organizations with grant funding in order to improve the health and well-being of the communities they serve. One cycle takes place each year and strategic funding priority areas are based on a health needs assessment conducted every three years. View their website for upcoming grants and more information: Kaiser Permanente Grants Page.

The Arts Council of Kern

The Arts Council of Kern: Grants are open to established nonprofit organizations, arts organizations, or other organizations involved in arts related activities. Organizations and/or individuals are required to become members of the Arts Council of Kern at the time of application.

The Virginia and Alfred Harrell Foundation

For 2020, the Foundation’s funding focus will be on Literacy-related projects. However, the Foundation will continue to grant smaller grant awards throughout the year. Smaller Grants will be focused on our core interests of: Early Childhood Education, Environment, Health & Well-Being, Historical & Cultural causes, and Animal Welfare. View their website for updates and more information: vahfoundation.org/apply/.

Wonderful Community Grants

The Wonderful Company is focused on the health and well-being of Central Valley communities. That is why we have decided to deploy our annual Wonderful Community Grants program to support Central Valley organizations that have been impacted by the coronavirus.

The organizations should demonstrate a commitment to making the rural communities of the San Joaquin Valley in California a more equitable place to live, work, and play. NOTE: This grant is focused on organizations making an impact in Delano, Wasco, Shafter. View more information here: wonderfulcommunitygrants.com/.

Additional Resources