Funding Opportunity: Invited for CS Fund (CSF) Grant

About the Organization

CS Fund (CSF) was founded in 1981 by Maryanne Mott and Herman Warsh. They endowed CSF’s sister foundation Warsh-Mott Legacy (WML) in 1985.

CSF/WML are private family foundations that share common program areas, staff, and boards of directors. Proposals to the two foundations are considered collectively, and grants are made by both entities.

The boards of directors of CSF/WML also make recommendations to the donor-advised TOP Fund at the Marin Community Foundation, and the CSF Fund at Tides Foundation.

All together, CSF/WML have made over $68 million in grants.

About the Grant

CS Fund practices strategic, effective and values-aligned grantmaking. As a small foundation, we seek to have an outsized impact while also addressing systemic inequities within philanthropy.

We fund a diverse, intersectional ecosystem of organizations and strategies, including legal, policy, education, organizing, grassroots power building, narrative/communications, and cultural change.

Our current program areas build upon grantmaking undertaken since the CS Fund was established in 1981. Some grantees have received support for four decades.

Occasionally we may make grants outside of our program areas to support particularly innovative social change strategies.

Theory of change:

Building the capacity and power of social movements for justice and equity – and creating conditions in which they can thrive – will dismantle harmful systems and create an inclusive democracy and a just transition to a regenerative economy and food system, both of which are necessary to mitigate climate chaos.

What we do:

  • Address root causes of problems
  • Promote systemic solutions
  • Identify and seize opportunities for strategic intervention
  • Play a catalytic role in launching new initiatives
  • Fight false solutions
  • Encourage the creation of positive alternatives
  • Be forward thinking and evolve over time
  • Prioritize organizations and strategies that are especially under-resourced in comparison with the scale of the problems they address and especially effective in achieving systems change

How we do it:

  • Provide the long-term, multi-year general and program support necessary for grantees to build capacity and power
  • Be flexible and responsive through the use of special opportunity grants
  • Act as a partner and resource to our grantees based on mutual openness, trust and accountability
  • Reduce the burden on our grantees throughout the grant lifecycle (application, due diligence, granting, and reporting processes)

How to Apply

Requests for support should be made by letter of inquiry. Please refrain from sending a full proposal unless invited.

Letters of inquiry should be no more than three pages in length and contain the following information:

  • A contact person’s name, title, mailing address, telephone, and e-mail address
  • Basic information about the organization, including a brief mission statement and an overview of current activities
  • A description of the organization’s approach to the specific problem being addressed and planned activities for the following year
  • A line item budget of projected expenses for the organization and project, if applicable
  • A list of secured and potential funding sources (grants received, proposals pending, planned submissions, earned income, etc.)
  • Please send LOIs to There are no deadlines for letters of inquiry – they are accepted throughout the year and will be acknowledged as soon as possible.

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