Criteria and Eligibility for Support

The Steinman Foundation believes that the diversity of the Lancaster County community is a fundamental strength.  Only through intentional integration of diversity, equity, and inclusion as values and practices can philanthropic and charitable endeavors ensure substantive change in our community.

The Steinman Foundation requires all applicants to establish and maintain a commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.  This commitment must be evident in principle, as well as in organizations’ practices, ensuring that services and opportunities are extended to all individuals, regardless of age, disability, economic circumstance, ethnicity, gender identity, race, religion, sexual orientation, or other identifying characteristics.  The integration of diversity, equity, and inclusion in a grant application is an important proposal evaluation criterion.  The Steinman Foundation reserves the right to withhold funding to, or omit from consideration applications from organizations that appear to engage in discriminatory practices or behaviors.

The Steinman Foundation’s grant-making currently highlights three strategic program areas: Early Childhood Education, Economic and Workforce Development, and Community Journalism and Media Literacy. The Steinman Foundation also accepts grant applications under its Community Stewardship program, through which a broad array of important local nonprofit work within Lancaster County is supported.  The Foundation only supports organizations serving residents of Lancaster County, PA.

The Foundation awards grants only to nonprofit, charitable organizations designated as exempt from income taxes under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code and identified by the IRS as a public charities and whose activities and programs are compatible with the mission and objectives of The Steinman Foundation.

The Steinman Foundation has established a minimum grant amount of $5,000.00.  Proposals that fall below this mark will not, unless otherwise indicated, be considered.

The Foundation may award grants for specific programs or for general operating support, with priority typically being given to programmatic opportunities, rather than general support.  Priority is also given to collaborative programs that engage multiple partner organizations.

The Foundation does not make grants to individuals or for-profit entities.

Grant Application Process

Our application process begins with a letter of inquiry (LOI) which may be submitted to Please include a brief summary of your organization’s mission and goals, and outline how grant funding would be used to support the Lancaster County community.  When putting together an LOI, consider:

  • How does your proposal fit within the priority areas of, and advance the mission of, The Steinman Foundation?
  • How is your work responsive to demographic and cultural changes in the community?
  • How does your thinking about diversity, equity, and inclusion inform how you develop and implement programs?
  • The Steinman Foundation gives priority to specific programs, sustainable solutions, and collaborative efforts. 
Woman filling out an application
LOIs are accepted on a rolling basis. LOIs falling within The Steinman Foundations three strategic priority areas will be reviewed at the quarterly board meeting subsequent to submission; Community Stewardship LOIs will be reviewed on an annual basis, in September, and must be submitted before the August 15th deadline to be reviewed in the corresponding calendar year.  If your LOI is approved, you will be invited to submit a grant application. Grant applications submitted before the next deadline will be reviewed at the following quarterly board meeting.

For more information specific to STEM grants, please visit

LOI and Grant Application Deadlines


February 15th: Decision notification
End of March

May 15th: Decision notification
End of June

August 15th: Decision notification
End of September; Annual Community Stewardship LOI review

November 15th: Decision notification
End of December

Note: Grant applications are accepted by invitation only. If you have received an invitation to submit a grant application, you must submit your application via our online grants application portal per the instructions in your invitation.

Grant reports may be required. The Steinman Foundation reserves the right to request information such as progress toward goals stated in your application, community impact, lessons learned, significant changes, and future plans. Financial reporting will require a budget showing the use of grant funds. Additionally, the Foundation is to be notified if the funding goal has been reached prior to the Foundation’s decision, or if the project has been cancelled.

If a site visit is considered necessary or desirable at any stage of the grant process, a Foundation representative will contact your organization.