Grant Guidelines

Our process for allocating grant capital across our three primary focus areas.

Family Program

75% of the BFF yearly allocation

Support will be provided in the following four areas:

  1. American Democracy – 30%
  2. Arts & Culture – 30%
  3. Jewish Causes – 30%
  4. Special Projects (as defined by the Board of Directors) – 10%

Discretionary Program

25% of the BFF yearly allocation

One quarter of the Foundation’s yearly allocation will be divided equally among the Foundation’s Board of Directors. Each Foundation Board member will have discretion over the allocation of his/her portion.

American Democracy

The Foundation seeks to advance and promote public understanding and appreciation for the United States of America and for the animating principles and values of American democracy. To encourage understanding of the unique nature of American democracy, possible philanthropic engagement can include: gifts to museums; educational programs for children; awards and scholarships to institutions and schools that have made significant contributions in American history, political science, or cultural diplomacy; and underwriting the cost of convening thought leaders who shape policy.

Arts & Culture

The Foundation is committed to celebrating the cultural assets of Washington, D.C. and its surrounding areas. The Foundation’s arts & culture portfolio includes support for museum activities, performing arts, visual arts, film, media, and art education programs. Priority will be given to projects that:

    1. use art as a tool for public dialogue and education
    2. use public celebrations of art as a way to bring the community together
    3. share community-building models developed by community-based arts institutions
    4. integrate different segments of society and awaken civic engagement

Jewish Causes

The Foundation seeks to strengthen the Jewish community of Washington, D.C. through its support of spiritual leaders, synagogues, and community programs that educate Jewish children and adults and support the development of Jewish identity. Priority will be given to leaders, institutions, and projects that:

    1. use innovative tools to examine the current state of Jewish identity
    2. foster dialogue and bridge cultural divides
    3. expand Jewish culture in a modern way

Geographic Focus

The primary geographic interest area of the Foundation’s Family Program is Washington, D.C., and the surrounding areas. The Discretionary Program does not have a geographic focus.


No grants will be made to individuals, to private foundations, or as loans.


Organizations must be classified by the Internal Revenue Service as public charities and tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986.

Grant Information

The minimum grant size for the Foundation’s Family Program is $10,000. There is no minimum grant size for the Discretionary Program.

Grant Cycle

The Foundation does not accept unsolicited proposals. Board meetings are held periodically throughout the year, with awards following those sessions.

Type of Support

General Operating support, program support, capacity building, and capital campaign requests will be considered. In addition, the Foundation will consider support for conferences and convening events relevant to its three core areas.