Bread & Roses Community Fund believes in change, not charity. We organize donors at all levels to support community-based groups in building movements for racial equity and economic opportunity. We support movements and their leaders through fundraising, grantmaking, capacity building, and convening.

Bread & Roses makes grants to organizations that use community organizing to create sustainable social change.

What is community organizing?

  • Civil disobedience
  • Mass protest
  • Mobilizing community members to voice community concerns by attending meetings with or writing letters, sending emails, and making phone calls to public officials
  • Mobilizing community members to pressure individual public officials to change their position on an issue
  • Hosting town hall meetings and listening projects or using other methods to gather community input on a particular issue
  • Training community members to disrupt harmful practices that government or corporate entities are using to maintain the existing system
  • Building alternatives to existing government or corporate practices that are harmful and making those alternatives available in ways that have a measurable impact on the larger community
  • Providing space for political education that builds the leadership and skills of members of an affected community, enabling them to analyze harmful systems and develop strategies for change

Who is eligible to receive a grant?

Groups must meet all of the following criteria to be eligible:

  • Located in Philadelphia, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, or Camden counties
  • Tax-exempt or have a fiscal sponsor that is tax-exempt or have a pending 501(c)3 application
  • Must have completed all progress reports from previous Bread & Roses grants. Failure to submit progress reports will disqualify organizations from future funding
  • Must submit a complete application
  • A focus on organizing and activism (not social service work)
  • A clear understanding of the root causes of the problem they are working to resolve
  • A strategy that includes collective action by the community and results in concrete outcomes
  • A vision that emphasizes changing the systems that create or perpetuate the problem being addressed
  • Leadership that is primarily composed of people affected by the problem that is being addressed
  • A priority for developing leadership from within the affected community

Additional eligibility criteria are listed within the description for each fund. Organizations can apply for a grant in every fund for which they are eligible. Organizations can receive up to $25,000 total in grants from Bread & Roses within a 12-month period.

Bread & Roses does not provide funding for:

  • Direct service work/social services
  • Research
  • Educational programs
  • Capital campaigns or building projects
  • Scholarships, fellowships, or grants to individuals (except through the Lax Scholarship Fund)

Core Funds

 Special Funds

The Jonathan Lax Scholarship Fund for Gay Men was established in 1994 by the late entrepreneur and inventor Jonathan R. Lax for the express purpose of encouraging gay men to obtain higher education, to aspire to positions in which they contribute to society, to be out about their sexual orientation, and to act as role models for other gay men with similar potential.

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Please complete all required fields and submit your application by 5:00 pm (EST) on November 1, 2019.

NOTE: It is a good idea to PRINT THE APPLICATION FIRST (download as .doc), review it and decide what you plan to write, and then come back and fill out the application. You can come back to this application any time and your data will be saved. You will not be able to change any information once you hit Submit so do NOT hit Submit until you are finished with the application.

We also recommend you CONTACT YOUR THREE REFERENCES (academic, community involvement, and personal) as soon as possible.  Let them know they will be receiving an email from Submittable with instructions on how to complete their letters of reference online.

*Required fields are marked with a red asterisk.*

If you need assistance while completing this form, please call us at 215-731-1107 or email lax@breadrosesfund.org.

Opportunity Fund grants are intended for special projects or emergencies that are not part of an organization’s ongoing work. These activities are frequently in response to rapidly emerging issues and might include: demonstrations and rallies, coalition efforts, conferences, or forums.

The Opportunity Fund makes grants to groups that:


  • Meet all basic eligibility requirements and funding criteria
  • Are facing an emerging issue, project, or situation that is not part of the organization’s ongoing work
  • Have not received an Opportunity Fund grant within the past 12 months*

*12 months from when the application was submitted


Grants range from $50 to $500. Groups who have received grants from the Opportunity Fund in the past year may not reapply in the following grant cycle.

 For eligibility criteria and more information about this Fund, visit our website. Check out our list of recent grantees to see if the Opportunity Fund is right for your group. 


Bread & Roses Community Fund