2023 High School Scholarship Recipients

Grant FAQ’s

Thank you for your interest in grants with the Ben B. Cheney Foundation.

This page addresses common questions we receive about our grants process.

We also recommend you read our tips for grant seekers. There, we make suggestions that may help you craft a strong letter of inquiry.

What size of grant do you make?

The Foundation has two levels of grants:

  • Grants more than $15,000 must go to a full board meeting. Most grants approved at board meetings fall in the range of $20,000 to $40,000.
  • Grants of $15,000 or less are part of our small grants program.

How much can we ask for?

There is no set formula for how much a grant seeker should request.

The Foundation is rarely a top level donor to a capital campaign.

The amounts the Foundation considers is guided by the geographic area. Read about our giving to learn more about geography and grant limits.

What communities do you invest in?

Please read about our giving to learn about geography and giving limits. We make grants in communities where Cheney Lumber mills operated.

The information, data, and statistics in your letter of inquiry must be specific to the local community.

How long do we need to wait before applying again?

If you received a grant from the Foundation, we like to wait two years before considering another letter of inquiry.

If you submitted a letter of inquiry but did not receive a grant, if may be helpful to contact us about your new proposal before submitting another letter of inquiry.

I forgot my password.

Please review the grant portal information.

Should I create a new account in the system?

It’s likely your organization already has an account. Duplicate accounts can cause confusion. Please see our grant portal page for more information.

What categories do you invest in?

Please see our giving page for more information.

Can we call you to discuss our idea or proposal?

Absolutely. It may be helpful to review the following before you do;

What don't you fund?

Please see our giving page to learn more about eligibility.

How long does it take to get a grant?

We hope to review and respond to proposal letters within four to six weeks. Those requests that we pursue will fall into one of two categories:

  • Small grant review and consideration ($15,000 and less) may be done in a month or two from the time a letter of inquiry arrives.
  • Larger grants must go to a board meeting; it is common for it to take from six to nine months from the time we receive a letter of inquiry to review at a board meeting.

Review the application process to learn more.

What are your deadlines?

We accept and review proposal letters throughout the year. You should, however, consider the time frame outlined on our giving page.

Our organization isn't located in one of your giving areas; can we still apply?

We focus on the area your organization serves, its level of service, and whether there are local organizations that address similar needs. An organization located in Tacoma, for example, that focuses on international relief would not be eligible because its services are outside the Foundation’s giving area.

If a proposal letter is declined, can I rewrite it and submit again?

The Foundation is unable to pursue every good request we receive. We always receive more requests than we have resources available to support. Rewriting a proposal letter seldom addresses the reason(s) that the proposal was declined.
The Foundation reviews each letter with a belief that there may be a good opportunity to pursue. If there is a minor technical error or the writing is open to interpretation we give the organization the benefit of the doubt. Also, we will contact you if there are questions that may clarify your project.