Small Grants

Two students cooking in Camp Elso Spring Camp

In response to community feedback, the Small Grants Fund was started in 2020 to improve equity of access for smaller nonprofit organizations that have not received Levy funding in the past.

The Allocation Committee in November 2020 approved $1 million total for seven small grants, with Portland City Council approving the funding a month later.

The initial three-year grants started in January 2021 and were then renewed through June 30, 2026. Small grants currently range from $20,000 to $70,000 annually. Funded programs must support Portland children and families in one of the Levy's six program areas. Multiyear grants support grantee partners to build capacity within their organizations and develop trusting relationships with children and families over the long term, leading to more positive outcomes. Nearly all small grants also feature disability inclusion goals to better serve children with disabilities.

Learn more about current small grants 

"These extraordinary, community-based organizations, and new PCL partners, will provide hope and resiliency to the next generation by serving children, youth and families from marginalized communities, individuals with intersectional identities, and those with disabilities,'' said Levy Allocation Committee Chair and City Commissioner Dan Ryan. "We are pleased to support their work and their missions. Congratulations all."

The Small Grants Fund process included guidance from a six-member volunteer Design Team, multiple community conversations with small organizations, and culminated in an application review process with a dozen community members. 

PCL publishes annual performance reports on funded programs each year.