Foundation Grant FAQs

criteria & process questions answered

The Samis Foundation considers grant requests by invitation only. 

The Foundation invites applications from Seattle’s Jewish day schools, organizations that serve Jewish youth and teens in Washington State and organizations involved in our six areas of philanthropy in Israel; archaeology, Aliyah and absorption, educational support, poverty and social mobility, widows and orphans, and wildlife preservation.

All applicants must have a current 501(c)(3) determination letter or otherwise valid taxexempt status under the Internal Revenue Act.  

What geographic areas do you fund?

Washington State and Israel. 

What will the Foundation not support?

The Foundation does not support grants outside of Washington State or Israel. In Washington, Samis does not support congregational schools or programs serving age groups outside of the K-12 demographic. The Foundation does not consider initiatives that are outside of its funding priorities, or programs that are in conflict with its values. 

What types of grants does the Foundation make?

Samis provides:

  • Operating and special initiative grants as well as support for capital and endowment campaigns for Seattle-area day schools
  • Opportunity grants, capital funding and needs-based scholarships for Washington State Jewish overnight camps
  • Teen Israel experience travel grants for specific summer and academic year programs and needs-based scholarships
  • Multi-year program grants for youth enrichment & engagement programs
  • Capital grants, multi-year program grants and incubator grants in the State of Israel
How often does the Foundation meet to award grants?

The Foundation operates based on an annual grants calendar with specific deadlines for each funding area. The Foundation’s Board of Directors meets on a quarterly basis.

Does the Samis Foundation accept unsolicited grant proposals?

No, the Foundation accepts grant proposals by invitation only. Potential partners are formally invited to work with Foundation professionals in preparing grant materials for proposal development and review by the Grants Committee and Board of Directors. 

Can I send a letter of inquiry to the Foundation asking to submit a proposal?

We urge grant seekers to review the Samis Foundation website to understand the Foundation’s mission, vision, values, strategic funding priorities and its grantmaking process. While we do not discourage letters of inquiry, the submitted material should be no more than one page in length describing the concept or potential initiative.  

Where can I send my letter of inquiry?

Inquiries may be sent to: 

If my organization does not directly contact the Foundation, how will the Foundation become aware of a potentially promising funding opportunity?

The Foundation’s program professionals examine the field on an ongoing basis. We network with funder colleagues; consult with current partners; reach out to practitioners and observe their work; read professional literature; attend conferences, forums and convenings. 

“The long term impact of investing in education is clear: it keeps Jews connected to their heritage and to each other, and ensures they are equipped with the tools to succeed out in the world.”