The Pittsburgh Foundation

Wish Book FAQ

How to Apply

If you’re a nonprofit with questions on how to apply for consideration for the next Wish Book, please review the FAQs. The next Wish Book application period opens July 13, 2020.

 

  • What is the Wish Book?

    The Wish Book is a hard–bound, printed book that is mailed to the Foundation’s donor community every November. This year’s special edition will be dedicated to raising general operating support to help nonprofit organizations recover from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Organizations selected for inclusion in the Wish Book will have a short description of their mission and a wish of $5,000 or less published in the book, giving donors an opportunity to learn about and support regional nonprofit organizations.

  • What is an eligible wish?

    Criteria for eligibility:

    • Must have a current public 501(c)(3) status.
    • Only one wish can be submitted per organization.
    • A wish must be for general operating or program support.
    • A wish cannot exceed $5,000; if application exceeds this amount, it will automatically be declined.
    • Full funding of a wish is not guaranteed.
    • Must be located in Allegheny, Westmoreland or Butler counties or provide at least 75% of services in these counties. Exceptions may be made. For questions about eligibility, please contact us.
    • Preference given to organizations that:
      • Are small and mid-sized nonprofit organizations (annual budgets under $1 million).
      • That have had to cancel productions and/or events scheduled between March 1 and August 31, 2020.
      • Were not included in the 2019 Wish Book edition.

     

  • What is the overall application process?

    Application:

    • The next Wish Book application period will open July 13, 2020.

     

    Selection:

    • Internal committee of Foundation staff reviews applications for completeness in late August.
    • A rotating selection committee of Foundation donors makes final selections by early October.

     

    Granting:

    • 75 organizations are selected for inclusion in the book and all organizations are notified of the final decision by early October.
    • In early November, the book is printed and mailed to the Foundation’s donor community.
    • The Pittsburgh Foundation accepts requests from donors on a rolling basis between November and March. At the end of March, the project is closed, and nonprofits are notified that the granting period for Wish Book has ended.
  • What are the application questions?

    Below are the application questions and the information you'll need to complete it.

    1) Mission: One sentence description of your organization’s work. This is the first sentence that the reviewers will read, so make sure it describes what you do.

    2) Budget: What is your organization’s budget for the current fiscal year?

    3) What county are you located in/serve? Must be located in Allegheny, Westmoreland or Butler counties or provide at least 75% of services in these counties. Exceptions may be made. For questions about eligibility, please contact us.

    4) Have you had to cancel productions and/or events scheduled between March 1 and August 31, 2020?

    5) Is your organization Black and Brown-led or primarily Black and Brown serving?

    6) Into which category does your wish fall: From these categories, please select the category that best characterizes your wish.

    • Arts, Culture and Humanities.
    • Community Development and Environmental Stewardship.
    • Education.
    • Families, Children and Youth.
    • Health and Special Needs.
    • Human Services.

     

    7) Amount Requested.

    8) Description of Wish: What unmet needs are you experiencing as a result of COVID-19? This could include increased demand for existing services, demand for new services, replacing revenue lost by cancellations and mandatory closures.

    9) Overall population served: Tell us who and how many people your organization serves each year.

    10) Photo upload: Please attach a high quality .jpeg image that is representative of your organization’s work. This image may be included in the book that is printed and mailed to donors. Please ensure that you own any rights to the image that you are uploading. Make sure that the file is a .jpg. We cannot accept Word documents, PowerPoint documents or .PNG images.

    11) Payment information: Due to the current COVID-19 virus emergency, the grants team has shifted from issuing paper checks and letters to electronic payments and letters.

  • May I see sample application answers?

    The following is meant to be a guide as you structure and frame your application.

    1) Mission:ABC Organization provides free childcare for parents returning to school to receive their high school diploma or post-secondary training.

    2) Budget: $55,000

    3) What county are you located in/serve? Allegheny

    4) Have you had to cancel productions and/or events scheduled between March 1 and Aug. 31, 2020? No

    5) Is your organization Black and/or Brown-led or primarily Black and Brown serving? ABC Organization is Black-led and primarily Black serving.

    6) Into which category does your wish fall: From these categories, please select the category that best characterizes your wish.

    • Families, Children and Youth.

     

    7) Amount requested: $5,000

    8) Description of wish:At ABC Organization, we provide free childcare for parents returning to school to receive their high school diploma or post-secondary training. Parents who participate in the program are all low-income, struggling to pay for child care costs while they forgo a salary in order to ultimately create a more secure and independent future for their children. At ABC, we provide as many basic supplies as we can. Due to the pandemic, we have seen an increase in demand for basic supplies. We lack the finances to purchase additional supplies for distribution. We are asking for $5,000 in operating support to help meet the increased and evolving needs of our constituents.

    9) Overall population served: Each year, ABC Organization provides free child care for 500 parents who are going back to school.

    10) Photo Upload.

    11) Payment Information.

    See an example of a previous Wish Book (PDF).

Apply Online 

Applications open July 13, 2020
 

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If you have any questions about Wish Book, please contact Taren Lumley at  412-394-2622  or lumleyt [at] pghfdn.org.