Category Archives: General

2018 Grant Program and Request for Grant Proposals

The Peninsula Endowment is a small San Francisco Bay Area based nonprofit organization whose mission objective is to: “Support programs that provide visually impaired individuals opportunities in the areas of education, employment and training to improve daily activities.”  Programs need not be based in Northern California but should have a significant impact on beneficiaries in the Northern California area.

The Peninsula Endowment provides grants to nonprofit organizations which offer programs aligned with its mission objective. The Peninsula Endowment is currently soliciting requests for one-time grants from qualifying 501(c)(3) organizations.  The deadline for this year’s grant applications is March 31, 2018.

To request a one time, grant from the Peninsula Endowment, there is no specific form or application to use.  A qualifying organization need only submit a letter via email or regular United states mail that includes the following information and documents.

  1. The name, physical address, and mailing address of the nonprofit organization.
  2. The contact information of the point person in the nonprofit organization, including full name, title, phone number, and email address.
  3. The website address, if any, of the nonprofit organization.
  4. The United States Federal taxpayer identification number of the nonprofit organization.
  5. A statement that the nonprofit organization currently qualifies as a United States Internal Revenue Code Section 501(c)(3) organization which is tax exempt under United States Federal and California Law.
  6. A statement of the mission objectives of the nonprofit organization and how the programs offered by the nonprofit organization align with the Peninsula Endowment mission objectives described above.
  7. A statement illustrating the services the nonprofit organization provides for visually impaired persons, including some detail concerning frequency (e.g., whether the organization offers monthly or weekly programs).
  8. A statement estimating the average number of visually impaired persons the nonprofit organization serves a year.
  9. A statement describing how visually impaired persons gain access to the nonprofit organization’s services and programs.
  10. A specific request for a dollar amount of grant funds the nonprofit organization would like to receive from the Peninsula Endowment and a general statement of what the funds would be used for by the nonprofit organization.
  11. If the nonprofit organization has received grant funds from the Peninsula Endowment in the past, a summary of what the prior grant funds have been used for by the nonprofit organization.
  12. As part of the grant request, please provide the following useful documents and information to help the Peninsula Endowment make a decision on the grant request.
    1. Copies of the financial statements for the nonprofit organization for the most recent two years.
    2. Copy of the budget for the nonprofit organization for 2018 or the current fiscal year of the nonprofit organization if not a calendar year.
    3. A copy of the United Sates Internal Revenue Service determination letter confirming the current United States Internal Revenue Code Section 501(c)(3) status of the nonprofit organization, or equivalent, if available.

To be considered for a Peninsula Endowment grant by May 31, 2018, requests must be received by Peninsula Endowment by March 31, 2018.

The Peninsula Endowment prefers grant requests to be sent by email to  The Peninsula Endowment will also accept hard copy requests sent to Peninsula Endowment, 4451 Madoc Way, San Jose, California, 95130-2044.

If a submitting nonprofit organization has additional questions concerning the Peninsula Endowment grant process, please email


Claire Small

Photo of Claire SmallOn Thursday, September 8, 2011, Virginia Tedrow and Anne Dunham, of the board of directors, visited Claire Small at her retirement home in Walnut Creek. Her generous donations founded the Peninsula Endowment in the late 1960s. She is 95 and in good health. At her suggestion we had lunch at a lovely Italian restaurant and learned more of her story. She and Virginia had both been Recording for the Blind board members and had much catching up to do.

Claire was one of the original volunteers for Recording for the Blind (RFB) when the first studio with one recording booth was set up in a small storefront on Cambridge Avenue in Palo Alto. She had signed up to volunteer because of an article she read in a publication from Castilleja School, an independent school for girls grade 6-12 established in the first decade of the 20th century. Both she and Ray Westman, who established the studio, had attended Castilleja in their youth, although they did not know each other. But it provided the connection.

When Claire’s father died (c. 1970) and left a house at 488 W. Charleston in Palo Alto to Claire, she did not need the house or the money from its sale. One night, in the middle of the night, she decided she would give it to RFB so they could have a bigger and better studio. A fund was also established to take care of the maintenance of the house.

Until November 2009 the house served as the home of the RFB studio, providing space for six recording booths, hosting volunteer recognition events, and serving as a gathering place for countless volunteers who recorded hundreds of thousands of hours of books for blind students.

In 2007 the property was sold to the Palo Alto Housing Corporation. Currently under construction is the Tree House Project which will provided 35 affordable units for households whose occupants work in Palo Alto but cannot afford to live there.

Claire was delighted to hear that her gift is still providing services that would otherwise be unavailable. We plan to go back next year to give her an update.