Equitable Justice Fund

Application Process

We are using a three-step application process in the hopes of getting to know our applicants, while also making the best use of time for applicants, the Foundation, and our reviewers.

  • Step 1
    Take the LOI eligibility quiz – this should only take a few minutes. If you answer “No” to any questions on the quiz, you are not eligible to submit an LOI, and doing so would not be a good use of your time. If you are unsure about how best to answer any of the questions on the quiz, please contact Amanda O’Meara at (703) 276-7500 ext. 10 or aomeara@weissbergfoundation.org.
  • Step 2
    If you answer “Yes” to all questions in the LOI eligibility quiz, complete the online LOI by the July 13, 2018 deadline. Create an account in our online grantmaking portal and follow the cues to submit your LOI. A preview of the LOI questions is below.
  • Step 3
    If you are invited for a video site visit, you will be asked to select a 90-minute time slot sometime August 13-24 for a virtual meeting with representatives from our grant review team. (The Foundation will individually invite applicants to video site visits by August 9. Those not invited will also be informed of their status on this date.)

Review Criteria:

A team of Foundation board and staff, along with additional individuals with proximity to issues related to the Equitable Justice program area, will review and assess LOIs and video site visits.

Strong proposals will come from organizations that demonstrate:

  • Informed strategies for advancing systems-level change in the justice system through advocacy, organizing and/or civic engagement
  • Use of an intersectional analysis accounting for structural racism and gender inequities
  • Key roles for and engagement of those closest to the issue(s) the organization seeks to advance
  • Intentional investments in developing the leadership capacity of constituents, staff, and board members
  • Deep knowledge of the issues the organization is working to address
  • Thoughtful strategies and tactics to advance the organization’s cause
  • Intentional approach to partnership and collaboration
  • Success in achieving goals and commitment to learning from both success and failure
  • Organizational health

LOI Eligibility Quiz

Prospective grant applicants must be able to answer YES to ALL of the questions below in order to submit an LOI. If you answer NO to any of these questions, please do not submit an LOI.

    Yes No
1. Is your organization based in and doing work in Maryland, New Mexico, New York, Virginia, or Washington, DC?    
2. Is your organization’s annual budget $2.5 million or less?    
3. Is your organization advancing systems-level change in criminal justice by strategically engaging in advocacy, organizing, and/or civic engagement as part of your strategy for change?    
4. Is your organization intentionally building the leadership and advocacy capacity of system-impacted women, girls, trans, and/or gender non-conforming individuals of color?    
5. Are your organization’s board and staff representative of the women, girls, trans, and/or gender non-conforming individuals of color you serve?    
6. Is your organization applying an intersectional analysis to your work, accounting for structural racism and gender inequities in society and the justice system?    

LOI Questions

LOIs should only be submitted if you answer YES to all of the LOI eligibility quiz questions. Below is a preview of the questions asked for the LOI. LOIs must be submitted through our online grantmaking portal.

  1. Budget
    What is your organization’s annual operating budget for the current fiscal year?
  2. Organization Background
    Please provide a brief history of your organization (e.g., when and why it was founded, what have been some major milestones) and your current vision and mission. (Character Limit: 3500)
  3. Key Constituencies
    Who are the key constituencies you engage and serve? Please be as specific as possible in terms of demographics (e.g., race, ethnicity, gender), geography, life experiences, etc. If you have members, how many? (Character Limit: 2000)
  4. Strategy
    What are the major strategies you use in your work and how do they advance equitable justice reform? (Character Limit: 3000)
  5. Outcomes
    What are the key overall outcomes you seek through your work? (Character Limit: 2500)
  6. Goals
    What are your major goals for the upcoming year? How will you assess progress against those goals? (Character Limit: 2500)
  7. Representation
    How is the community you serve represented on your staff, on your board, in your membership (if applicable), and/or in other leadership capacities? (Character Limit: 2000)
  8. Impact
    What are 2-3 recent accomplishments of your organization? (Character Limit: 2500)