Training and Reference Materials

Caring for Denver Foundation will fund the most impactful community-authored solutions addressing the mental health and substance misuse challenges in the City and County of Denver

We intend to fund efforts that tackle issues in four areas Denver residents identified and prioritized as the highest areas of need:

Alternatives to Jail

Greater supports, connections, practices, and opportunities to redirect people experiencing mental health and substance misuse crisis away from and out of the criminal justice system.

Community-Centered Solutions

Use community knowledge, strengths, and resources to foster local connectedness and support.


Better address and support mental health and substance misuse, and create more connections for our youth.

Care Provision

More people in Denver have access to the mental health and substance misuse care at the right time, and the supports to navigate that care. 

See below for more information on the general time frame for each funding area.

Current Focus Area: Alternatives to Jail

Caring for Denver Foundation’s first call for proposals is directed at programs, projects and/or activities that address Alternatives to Jail. Calls for proposals for the other priority areas will be released at later dates. Our vision is to move away from a criminal justice response to trauma, mental health and substance misuse crisis response, with care and services provided first, and jail as a last resort.

Through our investments, there will be greater supports upfront and more opportunities to implement treatment and interventions before, during and after criminal justice involvement; and Denver communities investing in alternatives to jail will work together more cohesively and collaboratively so that people are supported and connected throughout their recovery.

We hope that these efforts help reduce incarceration of people with mental health and substance misuse issues; reduce recidivism of people with mental health and substance misuse issues; and those released from the criminal justice system have the resources they need to be met where they are in recovery and live healthy lives in the community.

Click here to download the full Alternatives to Jail Call for Proposals. Calls for Proposals for the other priority areas will be released at later dates.

Alternatives to Jail Grant Eligibility

Applicant seekers must be located and/or offer services in Denver and to Denver residents. Please see our grant guidelines for more detail in the FAQs.

Applicants can be any nonprofit organization designated by the IRS as tax-exempt under Internal Revenue Code Section 501(c)(3), or under other sections of the code or fiscally sponsored by a 501(c)(3) nonprofit entity. Faith-based organizations are eligible to apply so long as they are designated by the IRS as a tax-exempt nonprofit organization and all Foundation grant funds are used for non-religious purposes. Applicants may also be any Indian or Native American entity. Government-supported entities, including schools, museums or libraries, as well as City and County of Denver agencies.

Caring for Denver will not fund:

  • Individuals
  • For-profit organizations
  • Fundraising events
  • Capital campaigns or endowments
  • Organizations that practice discrimination of any kind

Alternatives to Jail Grant Timeline

Register for an account in the Grants Portal 
by 7:00 p.m. (MDT) April 28, 2020

Proposals must be submitted by 7:00 p.m. (MDT) May 4, 2020
The online application system will not allow incomplete proposals or submissions after 7:00 p.m. (MDT).

All applicants will be notified of their status
in August 2020

How to Apply

  1. Get to Know Us!
    Take a peek at our strategic funding priorities report on the founding of the Caring for Denver Foundation, and how our community helped us get to our current and upcoming focus areas. Review the FAQs before getting started. Watch for our webinar soon after the release of each Call for Proposals.
  2. Review Our Current Focus Area
    See what we’re currently funding above as identified by nearly 1,600 people with lived experience, first-responders, youth, parents, creatives and many more. Access the current, open Call for Proposals here.
  3. Determine Eligibility
    Each funding area may have a set of specific eligibility requirements, but we also have a set of general criteria for all grantees. Check your eligibility by visiting our login page and clicking on “Create an account now.” This will bring you to our Eligibility Quiz.
  4. Register your organization
    Register in our Grants Portal after you’ve checked your eligibility – once registered, you can start an application. You must register at least five (5) days before the current Call for Proposals application deadline in order to be eligible for a grant.
  5. Submit Online Application
    If you want to apply under the current funding priority, the next step is to complete an online application, which provides us with needed information on your organization, proposal and budget. Access our Grants Portal and application here.
  6. Submit Additional information if requested
    You may be contacted if we wish to request additional information and documents. Just log back in if prompted by email.
  7. Receive a Decision!

Questions about our grants process? Drop us a line!

Application Process

Caring for Denver Foundation uses a Grants Portal that makes it easy to register for an account, submit an application online, check application status, and access submitted applications. Proposals must be received by 7 p.m. (MDT) on the deadline date. The deadline for each new funding opportunity will be posted with the Call for Proposals for that opportunity. Current, open Calls for Proposals can be found here. We cannot accept new submissions past the deadline. However, we will review applications for completeness and will contact you to let you know if we think something is missing and provide a timeframe to get us that information.

We request applicants submit electronic grant applications through our Grants Portal. The online grant application will guide you through the submission process. To see what the application looks like ahead of applying, review the Word document of our standard application here. If you cannot complete your application online, please contact us at 720.647.6375 or to arrange an alternate submission.

After submitting your application, you may be contacted to submit additional information and documents. That potential information is listed on the Word application mentioned above.

How to Submit an Online Application:

To create a new account, visit our login page and click the “Create an account now” button. Once you’ve completed the required information on your organization and clicked ‘Submit Request’ you will receive an email notification from us within two business days with your login info. You will then have access to our Grants Portal!

If you have set up an account and forget your username and/or password, click on ‘Reset’ or ‘Create password’ here. Then enter your email, click ‘Submit’ and you will receive an email notification with login info.

If you have already created an account, click here to log in and access your application.

Application Tips:

  • Once you have read the FAQ and Call for Proposals, you can start your application.
  • Be sure to gather all the attachments you will need to upload, complete the Line-item Budget Form and check your application for completeness before you save and submit. You can save your work, log out and log back in at any point.
  • The Grants Portal may work best using a Chrome browser, but will work with most browsers.
  • The Grants Portal does not autosave. Save often so you don’t lose your work. The Save button is in the lower right-hand corner of your application. You can retrieve your saved application later when you log back in the portal in the “Pending Requests” section.
  • Because the Grants Portal does not autosave and you may lose your work if you don’t save, we recommend composing your responses in Word then copying and pasting them into the Grants Portal. Try using the Word application for this purpose.
  • Print your application at any point by first saving your application, then clicking on the printer icon – it’s at the top right of your application.

Questions? Drop us a line!

Share This