The Human Relations Fund (HRF) supports community-initiated activities that focus on or raise awareness of civil rights, human rights, or equity issues and problems in Boulder; facilitate interaction, understanding, collaboration and civic participation among diverse communities; or enable communities that experience marginalization to celebrate events significant to them while providing learning opportunities to the general population.
Update on Human Relations Fund Grant Opportunities
Historically, funding for community events with a focus on raising awareness of civil, human rights or equity issues were governed by the Human Relations Commission (HRC), an agency of the Boulder City Council. The HRF and the HRC are aligned in the commitment to supporting community events and activities that highlight and bring awareness to civil, human rights or equity issues. With input from past and current Human Relations Fund (HRF) grantees, city staff has restructured the HRF grant process to make it more efficient for funding applicants and grantees and for city staff administering the funding program. The HRF restructure is effective immediately and changes to the program include:
- The HRC will no longer have role in the HRF grant process (application, funding, or reporting)
- Online funding application process in English and Spanish
- Streamlined application deadlines
- Funding recommendations made by the Human Relations Fund Application Review Process Team
- Brief written reports (no in-person reporting) following the funded event(s)
Funding Application Deadlines:
- April 2024 fund round for events taking place from June – December 2024
- October 2024 fund round for events taking place January – May 2025
Thank you for your patience as we work to implement changes for a better HRF experience for applicants and grantees.
Human Relations Fund Grants Proposal Guidelines
Human Relations Fund (HRF) grants may be given to:
Nonprofit organizations and individual organizers under the fiscal sponsorship of a nonprofit
Projects that have a significant component of programming that impacts residents of Boulder
Events that take place within the city limits of Boulder
Projects that reinforce the goals of respect for diversity, inclusivity, and equity
Activities that are free of charge for participants and open to the public
Additional criteria considered include:
Projects that are community-led
Collaboration with other organizations
Diversity among planners and decision makers
Inclusivity among participants
Access to people with disabilities
Projects or activities that provide opportunities for communities that experience marginalization
Activities that advance the ongoing and annual priorities of the HRF
Ability or inability to access multiple sources of funding
Projects that have not received prior funding from HRF
The extent to which the project or activity might engage and educate the larger community
The program or event for which you are seeking funding, take place in the City of Boulder and/or will engage community members in the city?
The HRF will not fund:
Proposals that are not from community organizations
Groups that have failed to meet their contractual requirements with the HRF in the past
Projects that do not have a significant component of programming that impacts residents of Boulder
Activities that charge fees for participants
HRF Fund Rounds
Money available to the HRF depends on city revenue and therefore varies from year to year. Only projects or activities that are planned or occur during the calendar year of their HRF funding will be considered.
The city anticipates awarding approximately $85,000 in funding in 2024 to qualified community organizations, based on alignment with the intent of the HRF and that meet the criteria. The maximum amount an organization can receive varies by project. Funds may be used for expenses such as food, postage, marketing and office supplies, as well as to pay a guest speaker at an event. Grants are not intended to be a primary funding source for personnel-related expenses, although modest honoraria (no more than 25% of the grant total) for volunteer organizers may be considered.
Awards will be made on a rolling basis as applications are received, reviewed and approved for funding, therefore, the total amount of available funding will decrease throughout the calendar year. The HRF Application Review Process Team is committed to utilizing the full fund every year but may choose to withhold some amount of funding at any given point in order to disperse grants more evenly throughout the calendar year.
The HRF will have rolling applications.
- Fund Round 1: For events occurring June to December 2024.
- Application period is open from April 5, 2024, through Friday, September 27, 2024, at 4:00 p.m.
- Fund Round 2: For events occurring January to May 2025.
- Application period is open from October 11, 2024, through Friday, March. 28, 2025, at 4:00 p.m.
If the HRF Application Review Process Team votes to award funds for your proposal, staff will negotiate a contract between the city and your agency or organization for completion of certain deliverables before any payment is issued. Depending on the award, total funding may be provided at the start of your program or project, or some portion may be withheld pending completion and submission and approval of a final report.
The city reserves the right to reject any or all proposals, to waive informalities and irregularities in proposals received, and to accept any portion of any proposal or all items proposed if deemed in the best interests of the city.
All publicity for City-funded programs must include the following credit line: “This organization is funded in part by grants from the City of Boulder’s Boulder Arts Commission and the City of Boulder’s Human Relations Fund.” In lieu of the credit line, the Boulder Arts Commission and Human Relations Fund logo may be used.” Following completion of a project or activity, recipients are required to submit a brief written report to designated city staff. A report template will be provided by city staff as a part of your contract pack if approved. Reports should be returned to firstname.lastname@example.org.