Current Focus Area: Alternatives to Jail

In partnership with community, our current Call for Proposals promotes greater supports up front and more opportunities to implement treatment and interventions before, during, and after criminal justice involvement to ensure that people are supported and connected throughout their recovery.

Grants Timeline

As we continue our work, we plan to open one funding area at a time with the release of new Calls for Proposals. The tentative schedule for release of each Call for Proposals is as follows:

  • Call for Proposals release for Alternatives to Jail: May 2021
    • Deadline for applications was June 10.
    • All applicants will be notified of their status in August
  • Call for Proposals release for Care Provision: February 2021
    • Deadline for applications was March 18.
    • All applicants will be notified of their status in May/June 2021.
  • Call for Proposals release for Community-Centered Solutions: Summer 2021
  • Call for Proposals release for Youth: Fall 2021

The release dates for each call for proposal is subject to change. Additional Calls for Proposals for current focus areas will be determined by factors including application volume, need, and community input.

Check back for more information on future funding opportunities and Calls for Proposals. Follow us on Facebook for updates on future funding opportunities.

Overview: Getting to Outcomes

Alternatives to Jail is directed at supports that create opportunities to reduce the number of people with mental health and substance misuse issues in the criminal justice system; support people as they transition across services, programs, and institutions while in–and after they leave–the justice system through diverse mental health and substance misuse solutions; and mental health and substance misuse efforts that prevent people from interacting with law enforcement or other aspects of the justice system.

Through our investments:

  • People with mental health and substance misuse issues are being successfully diverted away from the justice system
  • Those involved in or released from the criminal justice system are actively engaged with resources available to meet them where they are in recovery and live healthy lives in the community
  • Improved mental health and/or reduced substance misuse by those placed-at-risk of engaement or engaged with the justice system
  • Reduced recidivism of persons with mental health and substance misuse issues
  • Reduced disparities in mental health and substance misuse outcomes for those served

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 FAQ.

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 Foundation will not fund:

  • Grants to individuals, for-profit organizations or private foundations
  • Annual appeals, membership drives, underwriting or fundraising events
  • Endowments
  • Loans
  • Fellowships or scholarships
  • Debt reduction
  • Partisan causes
  • Programs that require  membership in a certain religion or seek to advance a particular religious faith or belief

Grant requests for the following are generally not supported at this time:

  • General operating costs
  • Facilities projects
  • Program-related investments

We will not make grants to organizations that practice discrimination of any kind.

We will not make grants to, participate in, or intervene in (including the publishing or distributing of statements), any political campaign on behalf of, in support of or in opposition to any candidate for public office.

​Our founding ordinance prohibits us from using our grant dollars to supplant existing funds. Grant recipients may not replace existing federal, state, city or other local agency funds with funds from Caring for Denver. However, our funds may be used to supplement existing funds to replicate or expand the scope of an existing program or project.

More to Explore

Alternatives to Jail

Learn more about our Alternatives to Jail priority area and our other areas of focus.

Application Process

Familiarize yourself with important dates, deadlnes, and requirements before you apply for a grant.

Grants FAQ

We’ve compiled a list of answers to common questions to equip you to more confidently apply.

Grants Resources

We request applicants submit electronic grant applications through our Grants Portal. We provide some resources to help you on your way.


Our Community-Centered Solutions & Care Provision funding opportunity is coming soon!. Click to join our mailing list to stay up-to-date