Black United Fund of Oregon started its Grants Awarding Program to increase available philanthropic funding for small, minority-led nonprofit organizations that are headquartered in traditionally underserved neighborhoods across the State of Oregon. 


BUF funds grant proposals up to $3,000.00 to nonprofit organizations to be used for project, program, and/or operating support. 


Grants are made to nonprofit organizations whose programs are consistent with the Black United Fund of Oregon's funding criteria and whose grant request fall in the area of education. BUF's focus on education routes from the belief that education is a tool that can be used to eliminate the cycle of poverty. Through BUF's grant process, funding supports programs that offer educational programing in the following areas: 

  • help students have a successful high school and/or higher education completion, 
  • work to close the achievement gap, 
  • ensure access to education, 
  • introduce youth to science, technology, engineering, arts, math, and the medical field (STEAM), 
  • guide youth toward improving academic work and responsible citizenship, and
  • encourage a college-going culture among young people. 

funding criteria

The Black United Fund of Oregon evaluates and awards grants using the following funding criteria. Nonprofit organizations that exhibit one or more of the following will be given primary consideration during the evaluation process: 

  • Serve ethnically diverse communities, particularly the African American community in Oregon & SW Washington. 
  • Demonstrate ethnic diversity among staff, board, and its constituency. 
  • Operate as a grassroots, community-based group, having an annual budget that does not exceed $600,000.00.
  • Have limited access to or difficulty raising funds due to cultural barriers or the progressive work the organization focuses on. 
  • Administer a culturally sensitive program methodology. 
  • Provide programs that are supported by and relevant to the needs of the community being served. 
  • Are located in disadvantaged communities in order to serve those communities. 
  • Have a history of, or program staff experienced in working with diverse populations. 


In order for an organization to be eligible for funding through the Black United Fund of Oregon, that organization must: 

  • Be a nonprofit organization with a 501(c)3 tax-exempt status from the IRS, or have arranged for grant administration by a fiscal sponsor
    • NOTE: The Black United Fund of Oregon can not be the fiscal sponsor for any organization applying for grant funding through this process. Fiscal sponsor organizations can have only one (1) organization apply for funding through this process. 
  • Be in compliance with terms outlined for previous Black United Fund of Oregon grants, e.g., have submitted all outstanding evaluation forms, agreed terms of service, and digital photos. 
  • Carry out work in Oregon and SW Washington. 

The Black United Fund of Oregon WILL NOT fund: 

  • Individuals, public institutions, or for-profit corporations 
  • Activities or items purchased prior to grant award decisions 
  • Organizations with annual budgets exceeding $600,000.00
    • NOTE: If using a Fiscal Sponsor, the sponsors budget CAN NOT exceed $600,000.00.
  • Capital Campaigns
  • Grant-making organizations 
  • Religious programs
  • Political campaigns, organizations, or candidates for public office
  • Endowments
  • Scholarships
  • Luncheons, banquets, or dinners