The Los Angeles-based Weingart Foundation has released the results of a survey (21 pages, PDF) of grantees and applicants to its regular grant program conducted in March and April 2012 in collaboration with Learning Partnerships.
The survey responses from ninety-four grantees and nine unsuccessful applicants applying for grants of at least $25,000 were largely consistent with two previous surveys conducted by the foundation over the last eighteen months. The vast majority of respondents — 94 percent of grantees and 100 percent of applicants — indicated that they believed the eligibility guidelines and criteria were "clear" or "very clear." In addition, all but three of the grantees said that the formal application process was "clear" or "very clear." About half of past grantees reported that they had spent between three and six hours on their interim and final progress reports.
Responses to optional questions regarding grantees' financial condition and outlook indicated that compared with previous surveys, fewer respondents have no cash or cash equivalents on hand while more have enough operating cash to see them through at least six months. Nevertheless, 37 percent of grantee respondents said their capacity to carry out their organizational missions had decreased, up from 16 percent in January 2011 — and for the first time a larger percentage than those who said their capacity remained unchanged or had improved.
In response to the feedback, the foundation has begun work on an online grant reporting system to help streamline its reporting process, re-worded or added clarity to its application guidelines and FAQs, and added more space for responses to certain questions in its Core Support application.