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Knowledge Base

What is an RFP?

RFP is an acronym for Request for Proposal. When a funder, such as a government office or a foundation issues a new contract or grant program, it sends out RFPs to agencies that might be qualified to participate. The RFP lists project specifications and application procedures. While an increasing number of foundations use RFPs in specific fields, most still prefer to consider proposals that are initiated by applicants.

However, RFPs are becoming an increasingly popular vehicle for foundations to publicize new program initiatives.

For examples of recent RFPs arranged by subject area, you might refer to the RFP Bulletin in the Philanthropy News Digest. The most recently posted RFPs can be found down the middle of the page (organized by category). Other currently active RFPs can be found organized by category. To access these RFPs, use the subject listing located on the right-hand side of the screen. Listings in the RFP Bulletin provide the date posted, the deadline for applications, links to relevant organizations, and a link to the full RFP (usually residing on the funder's Web site).

You can search the RFP Bulletin by keyword and also subscribe to a free e-mail version sent to your inbox once a week.

RFPs are also posted on the bulletin boards of Foundation Center Libraries.

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