Grant Guidelines


The Foundation is dedicated to the support of established and emerging poets, translators of poetry, and programs that cultivate an awareness of poetry and the importance of poetry in American culture.

Applicant Requirements

Grant support is provided to non-profit, tax-exempt organizations as defined under section 501 (c) (3) of the United States Internal Revenue Code. The Foundation will review proposals submitted by tax-exempt organizations that assume legal, fiscal, and administrative responsibility for approved grants.

Witter Bynner and d.h. Lawrence

D.H. and Frieda Lawrence with Bynner

Grant Amounts and Duration

Organizations may apply annually for grant support between $1,000 and $10,000. Multi-year grants are one-year grants that may be renewed at the discretion of the foundation. The foundation does not support indirect costs for grant administration, capital improvements, or general operating expenses.

Letter of Intent

A letter of intent is required before a grant application can be submitted. The letter should be a maximum of two pages describing the sponsoring organization, the program for which funding is requested, the total budget, the portion of the budget for which foundation funds are being requested, and other funding sources committed to the project.

Letters of intent are accepted from August 1 through December 31 each year.

If the foundation finds the request appropriate and within the scope of our mission, an invitation to submit an application will follow during the first week of January.

Completed applications must be postmarked by February 15th each year. Funding decisions are made at the May meeting of the Board of Directors. Applicants will be notified as to the status of their proposals by the beginning of June.

Grants are paid in installments beginning on the project start date which must be after June 1, the beginning of the foundation’s fiscal year.

Witter Bynner and Navajo Indians of Santa Fe

Bynner with Pueblo Friends

Review Process

Foundation staff reviews applications before they are presented to the Board of Directors for additional evaluation. The Board of Directors review and approve selected applications for funding each year.

Categories of Support

The Foundations on-going poets-in-the schools poetry workshops and residencies are currently the primary grant support for individual poets. Individual poets must be sponsored by a 501 (c) (3) organization.

The translation of poetry from languages not currently available to English readers and poetry which has not been translated or merits a new translation will be considered. Projects that explore the art and the process of translation are also encouraged. The foundation does not fund publications of poetry-in-translation; it rather makes it a priority to provide support for individual translators. Samples from the proposed translation should accompany the application.

Organizations applying in this category should describe the target audience. Please indicate previous programming the organization has successfully completed. Past programming has included documentary film production, dramatic presentations, in-school poetry programs, reading series, conferences, and seminars.

Programs that use poetry for education, healing, and growth are encouraged. Model programs or curriculums that can be transferred and used by other organizations are preferred. Past programs have focused on youth-at-risk, hospital and therapeutic programs, minorities, people with disabilities, prison programs, curriculum development, and documentary films.

Mail Letters of Intent from August 1 through December 31 to:

The Witter Bynner Foundation for Poetry

Post Office Box 10169

Santa Fe, New Mexico 87504

Download Grant Guidelines (pdf)