Fostering Solutions and Infrastructure – Grant Guidelines FAQs

I am interested in investment capital for my project. Can I apply through this process?

This application process is designed solely for grant funding for solutions and infrastructure that help make catalytic capital transactions more efficient and more effective, not for investment capital. Separately, the MacArthur Foundation is making a number of investments in funds and intermediaries that demonstrate a powerful use of catalytic capital across diverse sectors and geographies. Although no additional investments are contemplated at this time, you can learn about MacArthur investments in C3 Field Partnerships here.

The grant guidelines list a few different dates for deadline and review. Can you share more about the process?

Applications for Fostering Solutions and Infrastructure grants are now open, and we are currently accepting submissions with a final deadline of midnight, Central Daylight Time on March 15th, 2022. We are utilizing an RFI to RFP process for this call, initially requesting 1–2-page summaries of each proposed project that will be thereafter reviewed by the C3 Project Advisory Board. A number of promising applicants will then be requested to submit a full proposal, which they will have approximately 6 weeks to compile. We aim to begin making grant awards in Q3 2022 and announce awardees in Q4 2022.

Can you provide additional guidance regarding grant size and amount requested?

Although proposals of up to $200,000 will be considered, we expect that most grants will be smaller than the maximum. We ask that proposals submit a budget that is right sized to project design.

Do you fund salaries and operating expenses?

These grants are expected to be made in the form of project-based grants. Within a proposed project budget, C3 Strategic Partners have worked to align our indirect cost limit to the true cost of conducting project-based work. As such, indirect costs can comprise 29% of the total budget submitted. Indirect costs include overall organizational operating expenses and overhead costs, which includes salaries of individuals needed for overall management of the organization. Salaries for program staff needed to implement the project are not included in the 29% limit.

How long is the grant duration? Can I request multi-year funding?

Work should be completed within 6-8 months of the grant award and multi-year proposals will not be considered. No follow-on funding is anticipated to be available from C3 Grantmaking.

Do you fund non-U.S. organizations?

Yes. We anticipate making grants to both domestic and international organizations through this opportunity. The C3 Grantmaking initiative has a global focus, and we are looking for representation across many geographies. Within that, our strong preference is that work focusing on the Global South will be conducted by organizations or personnel based in the Global South.

Do you fund for-profit entities? Will you give grants to individuals?

We are open to supporting 501(c)3 organizations or making project support grants to specific charitable projects within a larger for-profit entity. We will not make grants to individuals through this process.

Can funding provided through this process be combined with funding from other sources?

Yes, applicants are encouraged to seek out multiple sources of funding for projects, and we anticipate that achieving the desired solutions and infrastructure that projects are focusing on will require additional resources beyond what C3 can provide.

I see there are multiple components of C3 Grantmaking. When can we expect that additional grant opportunities and guidance will be provided?

C3 Grantmaking utilizes a number of different strategies. Read more about our C3 Grantmaking Approach and Priorities here. Although C3 Grantmaking’s programmatic work will continue through 2023, Fostering Solutions and Infrastructure is anticipated to be our final open call for proposals. Selected grantees will join previously funded projects in producing resources, tools, and knowledge for the broader impact investing field. If you are interested in updates on C3 Grantmaking’s ongoing work, click here to be added to our mailing list.

How are Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) considerations incorporated into the grantmaking process?

We review all applications with an eye towards promoting DEI among our grantees, their programmatic work, and the larger impact investing field. This call requests that each project detail how their proposal will benefit communities, individuals that are low-income, historically marginalized, and/or help the impact investing field achieve deeper impact in regard to one or more critical issues of our time, including racial justice, climate crisis, public health equity, economic recovery and the SDGs. Additionally, to track and understand the extent to which this work is supporting a diverse range of perspectives, we are asking all applicants to provide information on the demographic composition of their teams. Organizations that are subsequently approved to receive a grant will be asked to share additional DEI information.

Will feedback be available for declined proposals?

We will strive to provide feedback where it is helpful, but cannot commit to providing feedback to all applicants.

May our institution submit more than one application, if our proposals have significantly different focus areas?

While this is possible, the C3 Grantmaking team intends to engage with a broad and diverse set of actors and is unlikely to fund two separate proposals from the same organization. We strongly encourage applicants to pick one proposal for submission.

I have questions that are not currently answered by this FAQ. What is the best way to connect with C3 Grantmaking staff?

Please contact Program Officer, Emily Duma, at

The photo above features the work of Blue Forest Conservation, a mission-driven nonprofit that created the first Forest Resilience Bond to help address the dangers of overgrown forests. Blue Forest Conservation is part of The Rockefeller Foundation’s Zero Gap Initiative, a C3 Field Partnership.