Frequently Asked Questions

How do we know if our proposal is a good match?
The best way is to review the Grant Guidelines page here on the site. Following the grant guideline review, you can submit a letter of inquiry, via the on-line process:

How do we know the right amount to ask for in a proposal?
You can review the history of grants as a guide. Our typical grant range is $5,000-$25,000.

Do you ever make grants outside of NE Ohio?
No, we do not consider grant requests outside Northeast Ohio. On rare occasions, we have made grants outside of our region that are trustee-driven.

Do you make multi-year grants?
We do make multi-year grants anywhere from 2 to 5 years depending on the size of the grant. This allows us to make a larger grant over a longer period of time. Frequently, multi-year grants are made for capital projects and capital campaigns.

Do you fund individuals?
No, we only give to non-profit organizations that benefit children in NE Ohio.

Do you fund salaries for projects?
No, we do not fund salaries or operations. We prefer to make one-time grants that do not require funding year after year.

Do you make site visits?
We typically make site visits after a grant proposal has been submitted as part of the review process to meet with key people and see the organization in person. We do not have the time nor the staff to make site visits prior to a grant submission.

Can I mail a request, LOI, or grant proposal?
No. All forms are now accepted, exclusively, on-line through the following link:

How do I know if the foundation has received my application or if I am awarded a grant?
You will receive an e-mail to confirm submission, and your application status will be updated in your on-line account.

If we were declined funding previously, can we reapply? If so, how long do we need to wait?
You may reapply for the next granting cycle, but first, find out why your grant request was declined to see if your request is a good match with our guidelines. There is no point to reapplying if you are not aligned with our grant priorities.

Can I apply for an operating grant?
No. We do not make operating grants that would need funding year after year.

Do you give grants for research projects?
No. We do not make grants for research projects as specified under our grant guidelines.

My 501(c)(3) has a pending status; can I apply for a grant?
We recommend that you wait for your 501(c)(3) status as this form must accompany your grant request.

May I submit more than one application in a funding cycle?
No. We already get more requests than we can possibly fund.

May I publicly acknowledge a grant I received from The Hershey Foundation?
Yes, we recommend this and will sometimes send our logo for publications.

Can I call to check on the status of my grant?
No. If timing is an issue for some reason, you may email this request to [email protected]

Approximately how long does it take to receive a response?
We tend to notify grantees within a week of our board meeting with a letter and the grant. The schedule for notification is at the bottom of the Applying for Grants page.

If I have further questions, whom may I contact?
Please contact Debra Hershey Guren with questions or concerns via email at [email protected]

How are funding decisions made?
Trustees review the proposals and prioritize based on our grant guidelines and funding priorities. The organization must be in NE Ohio and specifically benefit children.

We tend to give full grants to fewer organizations to have a greater impact. We sometimes defer a grant we would like to make when funds are not readily available. Sometimes these grants are made 6-12 months later.

It is helpful to list other grantors in your proposal, especially if we are unfamiliar with your organization. Doing your homework and following the guidelines will more likely lead you to successful grant funding.