February 22, 2018
Golisano Foundation is Expanding Geographic Target Area to Include all of
NYS OPWDD Region 1
The Golisano Foundation is expanding its geographic target area and will now accept grant applications from non-profit organizations serving those with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) located in the entire Region 1 (the combination of Western NY and Finger Lakes Regions as designated by NYS OPWDD, Developmental Disability Regional Offices (DDRO). 

The Golisano Foundation is the largest private family foundation in the United States dedicated exclusively to supporting organizations that provide life enhancing service for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD). The Foundation is interested in supporting organizations that push the boundaries of possibilities while challenging negative perceptions and stereotypes about people with IDD. Programs should be designed to expand opportunities, increase options and access to services in inclusive settings, and provide services that empower individuals to make their way productively in their communities.
Who Can Apply
The Golisano Foundation will consider grant requests from non-profit organizations (501(c)(3)) that support individuals with IDD located in Region 1. Also, applications will be considered from community-based organizations offering inclusive programs for participants with and without disabilities.

What We Fund
Areas of interest include lifecycle transitions and support for individuals with IDD and their families and caregivers including but not limited to:
  • educational support
  • employment services
  • vocational and life skills training
  • year-round preventive health, wellness and fitness activities
  • caregiver respite
  • recreation
  • assistive technology
  • transportation
  • community awareness 

We are interested in funding proposals that:
  • offer a range of options to individuals with IDD
  • promote integration of people with IDD in their community, and
  • encourage active involvement of people with IDD and their family or caregiver in program development and implementation

Funds may be used for a variety of programs and activities including, but not limited to:
  •  Short-term programs
  •  Pilot programs
  •  Equipment or facility renovation
  • Training and capacity building
  • Start-up costs for a new program (but please be advised that this grant is not intended to provide ongoing revenue)

Typical grants range in size from $15,000 - $40,000, however, smaller and larger grants will be considered. See more information on areas of priority. See examples of programs funded in the past.

Geographic Target Area
Our geographic target area includes all of NYS DDRO Region 1 (combined Western NY and Finger Lakes Regions; see map above).  

  • For 2018, strong emphasis and consideration will be given to organizations located in rural communities where resources and services are limited. Initiatives that target individuals with IDD who are underserved, isolated and/or have difficulty accessing services and programs are encouraged to apply.

How to apply
Interested applicants can inquire about funding by contacting Evalyn Gleason. You can access the application form online and submit it electronically at

Grants Coordinator
Application deadlines:

Submission deadlines for the 2018 grant cycle are listed below.

·        March 15, 2018 ( for application review at April Foundation Board meeting)
·        June 14, 2018   (for application review at July Foundation Board meeting)
·        September 13, 2018 (for application review at October Foundation Board meeting)