Grant Request Guidelines

As we continue to endure the ever-changing COVID-19 crisis and work towards a new normal, we are appreciative of all of our nonprofit partners for their dedication and continuing ingenuity. The Longwood Foundation remains committed to being responsive to the needs of our community and nonprofit organizations. We have learned from this crisis, and have incorporated those takeaways into our decision making and grantmaking processes.

We continue to welcome applications from organizations seeking to improve the quality of life and future of the state of Delaware and/or the Kennett Square area (within a four-mile radius of Longwood Gardens). In general, we choose to practice “passive” or “responsive” philanthropy, which means that we assume we don’t know the best way to improve our region and therefore we let each applicant define success in their own way. From these distinct views of the future, we choose the most compelling in which to invest. The deadlines for our Spring and Fall cycles are March 1 and September 1, respectively. 

The Application Process

Eligibility: The Longwood Foundation’s mission is to improve the quality of life in Delaware and the Kennett Square area by catalyzing and strengthening nonprofits to better serve their communities. The Foundation accepts grant requests from nonprofit 501(c)(3) organizations located in and/or benefiting the state of Delaware and within a four-mile radius of Longwood Gardens. Organizations that have previously applied are asked not to re-approach the Longwood Foundation with a funding request within two years of a previous request, regardless of whether the proposal was approved or declined. Therefore, if you are not eligible for the Spring or Fall 2022 grant cycles because of a past grant request, please reference your past grant agreement or declination letter to determine when you can return to Longwood for another request.

Information Sessions: The Longwood Foundation offers Grant Information Sessions ahead of each application deadline. The Information Session provides an overview of the application and evaluation processes used by the Foundation. Please note that participation neither improves nor harms an organization’s likelihood of receiving funding. If a representative from an organization has participated in the past, it is not necessary to repeat attendance at a session unless there has been a change in the organization’s leader and/or Board Chair role.

Pre-Meetings:  Prospective applicants may request a pre-meeting ahead of the submission of a proposal. During this meeting, organizations may update the Foundation on their planned request and ask questions pertinent to drafting their application. Note that this meeting is optional for requests less than $500,000 and requesting one neither improves nor harms an organization’s likelihood of receiving funding.

Unfortunately, all pre-meeting spots for the Fall grant cycle have been filled. Should your organization be planning a request for $500,000 or more and you did not previously request a pre-meeting, please email Lauren Petrusky, Grants Administrator (

Given the volume of pre-meetings requested and a relatively small number of Foundation staff, all meeting requests may not be able to be honored ahead of the application deadline. Requests for projects that may be greater than $500,000 will be prioritized, with the remaining requests handled in the order in which they are received.

The pre-meeting request form for the Spring 2023 grant cycle will be available in late 2022. Please check back then.

Application Process: The Longwood Foundation operates two grant cycles per year, with proposal deadlines of March 1st and September 1st. The Foundation utilizes an electronic Grants Management System for application submissions. When preparing for a proposal, please review the other pages on the website to view the Foundation’s values, FAQs, and information on the grant life cycle. Prior to beginning an application, it is recommended that organizations visit Guidestar to either create a profile or review/update their current profile. Applications to Longwood must be submitted through the online system and late submissions will not be considered. Please note that the Longwood Foundation generally does not fund more than half of a project or program.

In-Person or Zoom Meetings: As part of the proposal evaluation, organizations submitting a request will have a meeting scheduled to discuss their proposal with the Longwood Foundation staff. These meetings assist Longwood in better understanding the organization, its leadership, and the proposal in order to support the Trustees’ decision making. During these meetings, Longwood Foundation staff will ask many questions about the request, the requesting organization, and the proposed impact of the application. Staff may email questions in advance, with nonprofits asked to respond either during or within two weeks of the meeting. During the meeting to discuss the application, the Longwood Foundation is likely to have questions about the financials. If the Executive Director is not familiar with the organization’s financials, please ensure that the financial expert joins the meeting.

For additional information on the grant cycle, including information on grant decisions and distribution of funds, please see the Grant Life Cycle At-A-Glance document.




How To Apply

 Application Contents: The application contains separate sections asking for an executive summary, information on the current request (including proposed outcomes/impact), organization information, and financial information. A blank copy of the application can be viewed in the link below, with mandatory questions starred in red. This document is only provided for the convenience of prospective applicants to help plan their submissions. Please note that the application must be completed electronically using the online grants management system.  Late applications or those outside of the electronic grants management system will not be accepted. This application is subject to change and is only indicative of the Fall 2022 requirements.

How To Apply: Applications are only accepted electronically through the Longwood Foundation online grants management system. Please note that this is a shared application portal with the Welfare and Crestlea Foundations. While this is a shared portal, the foundations are separate entities with individual requirements and deadlines. Please ensure that you are using the Longwood Foundation application. The application deadlines are March 1 and September 1

Apply Now: Use the link below to apply now using the Longwood Foundation grants management system.

Links & Documents

Questions? Email Lauren Petrusky, Grants Administrator (