1. Who is behind Better Together Fund?
Sponsorship and oversight of Better Together Fund is provided by its founding steering committee: The Dallas Foundation, Lyda Hill Foundation, The Meadows Foundation and the United Way of Metropolitan Dallas. Grants are approved by the Steering Committee and awarded through the Dallas Foundation with the anticipation of awarding $2-3 million in the first few years of the project.
2. What size are the grants?
For the pilot, $2 to $3 million is available in the fund, plus in-kind resources. Individual grant sizes vary depending on the collaboration stage the application is: exploration (up to $3,000), to planning, implementation, or program delivery support (up to $600,000 from end-to-end.)
Recognizing the importance of nonprofits being able to seize unpredicted catalytic moments, the Better Together Fund will consider applications on any issue, at any time until the dollars run out. For more information, click here.
3. How many grants will be awarded?
We do not have an anticipated number of grants to award. We will review any grant request at any time for any cause. Our grants are on a rolling, first-come, first-served basis.
4. Can a nonprofit organization receive funding to collaborate with a for-profit or government partner?
Yes! Better Together Fund encourages cross-sector collaboration. Better Together Fund believes that the nonprofit, for-profit, and government sectors have unique strengths and limitations, and impactful change can be achieved when the sectors work together.
Collaborations applying for a Better Together Fund Grant must include at least one non-profit partner. However, we encourage all nonprofit organizations to be creative and look to other sectors when considering partnerships and collaborative efforts.
5. Will a Better Together Fund application or funding allocation preclude my organization from receiving support from the individual funding partners?
Funding requests to Steering Committee members unrelated to the Better Together Fund will not be prejudiced. Applying for Better Together Funding does not preclude applying to other funding sources made available by participating funders.
The participating foundations believe that nonprofit boards, leaders and funders should routinize the consideration and practice of formal collaboration as an important strategic option. Organizations that make the decision to undertake the hard work of exploring such activities should be acknowledged, encouraged and supported by funders with additive funding.
6. What if I still don’t want my funder (a steering committee member) to know that we’re exploring these options at such an early stage?
All Steering Committee members recognize that confidentiality can play an important role in this process, especially during the early conversations. The Steering Committee will work with interested applicants to understand the confidentiality needs for each situation and address them accordingly.
Interested applicants may choose to contact any representative from the Steering Committee to schedule a preliminary consultation. This required first step of the application process can be kept confidential with the representative the applicant chooses to contact upon request. However, once the applicant decides to submit a LOI (the second step of the application process), the entire Steering Committee will be made aware of the proposed collaboration.
7. What geographic area does the Better Together Fund Support?
Funding priority is given to collaborative initiatives that serve constituents in Dallas County. However, initiatives that serve other North Texas communities are welcome to apply.
8. What is the funding period for grants?
Better Together Fund grants are designed to meet organizations where they are. The grant period for each grant will be defined based on the applicant's project needs, timeline, and budget.
9. My organization is new, and therefore does not have the required financial statements. Can we still apply?
Yes! Better Together Fund asks that new initiatives or organizations provide equivalent financial documentation, such as a board-approved budget.
10. Can partner organizations submit multiple applications for multiple unique collaborative ideas?
If the same set of partner organizations have multiple collaborative ideas, Better Together Fund asks that only the strongest idea be submitted for review. A single organization can submit multiple applications for multiple unique ideas so long as each collaboration has a different set of partner organization(s).
11. Can an organization apply for both a readiness and feasibility at once?
Yes. The La Piana Readiness Assessment and the Feasibility Grant are both designed to help organizations answer the questions: SHOULD we pursue a formal collaboration? Are we ready? With whom should we collaborate and why? Organizations may determine that they need additional technical assistance beyond the La Piana Readiness Assessment, in which case they may also simultaneously apply for a Feasibility Grant to cover the costs of further exploration to help them answer the questions above.
12. Can a collaboration receive funding for the same type of grant twice?
Yes. A collaboration may apply for additional funding under the same grant type as needed if they did not initially receive maximum funding for that grant type. If a collaboration has received maximum funding for any particular grant type, they are ineligible for additional funding under that grant.
Better Together Fund anticipates some collaborations will face unexpected and unintended expenses that are outside the framework of the support types described and withholds the right to deploy additional capital at the Better Together Fund's discretion.
13. My organization already has a collaboration in place, can we apply for a Better Together Grant?
First time applicants must apply for a Readiness Assessment and Feasibility, Planning or Implementation Grant. Better Together Grants are contingent on a successful completion of a formal collaboration previously supported by the fund.
14. For an Implementation Grant, does the required formal board resolution need to be attached to the LOI or can it be submitted with the application if approved to apply?
If formal board resolution is not readily available at the time an organization wishes to submit a LOI for an Implementation Grant, a LOI signed by the respective Executive Directors and Board Chairs stating the intention to seek formal board resolutions is sufficient. A brief statement confirming that each board (i.e. not just the board chair) has formally approved implementation for the proposed project must be submitted either accompanying the LOI or with the Implementation Grant application.
15. What else should I know about nonprofit collaboration?
16. What if I want to know more about whether we qualify for funding support?