Basic Human Needs & Health

Basic Human Needs & Health

The Foundation supports organizations that assist people to meet their basic needs and move toward self-sufficiency. The major goals are to prevent and end homelessness; provide sufficient and nutritious food; and increase access to primary health care.

Meeting basic human needs through grants to nonprofit organizations

Geographic focus:

  • Maryland (emphasis on metropolitan Baltimore)
  • Northeastern Pennsylvania


Goal 1: People will have a safe and stable place to call home.

To this end, the Foundation supports programs that:

  • Provide temporary shelter with comprehensive case management to ensure the shortest possible shelter stay and successful transition to stable housing.
  • Employ effective strategies that move people out of homelessness through placement into long-term housing with the necessary supportive services.
  • Construct or renovate new units of housing with appropriate person-centered services in which formerly homeless people/families can afford to live.
  • Emphasize connections to work as a key strategy in ensuring long-term housing stability and self-sufficiency.

Goal 2: Homeless youth who are unaccompanied will receive all appropriate support services to aid them in reaching self-sufficiency.

To this end, the Foundation supports programs that:

  • Provide supportive services for runaway and homeless youth including outreach, information and referral, case management, and life-skills training.
  • Support the education of homeless youth by removing barriers to education and providing additional support to maintain positive educational experiences. Homeless youth may need certain accommodations to stay in school while unstably housed, such as tutors and transportation.
  • Create, expand, or upgrade facilities serving homeless youth, such as programming space, emergency shelter, and transitional and permanent supportive housing.

Goal 3: People will have access to short term economic and social service support in times of hardship.

To this end, the Foundation supports programs that:

  • Provide short-term financial assistance for utilities, rent, and other expenses to prevent eviction, loss of electricity, etc. The financial assistance should be paired with additional support services whenever possible for longer term stability.
  • Provide pro-bono legal counsel that assists low-income individuals to access public and private benefits, exercise legal rights, and remove barriers to self-sufficiency.

Goal 4: People will have access to sufficient and nutritious food in the most dignified possible way.

To this end, the Foundation supports programs that:

  • Expand the capacity of community food banks to effectively process and distribute goods. The Foundation supports capital projects that increase warehouse space, add cold storage and handling, and make other modifications necessary to serve more people.
  • Increase access to fresh produce and proteins.
  • Assist eligible individuals to apply for local, state, and federal food resource benefits as part of a strategy to achieve greater self-sufficiency, including workforce development when possible.

If you wish to submit a grant request on behalf of a food bank located outside of Maryland, Northeast Pennsylvania, or Hawaii, you must first contact Amy Kleine, Program Director for Basic Human Needs and Health, at

Goal 5: Increase access to health care and improve the health status of low-income populations.

To this end, the Foundation supports programs that provide comprehensive primary care (somatic, behavioral, reproductive, and oral health care) to a low-income population. The Foundation will consider those health centers that can leverage funds from the federal and state governments and thus have the financial sustainability to serve large numbers of patients and maintain a balanced patient mix of insured and uninsured. Typically, the Foundation supports Federally Qualified Health Centers and Look-Alikes. Outpatient and residential substance abuse treatment programs will be considered if there is a mental health component to address co-occurring disorders. Preference will be given to programs that include wrap-around services and community linkages. Applicants should:

  • Demonstrate a history of commitment to serving the underserved and uninsured.
  • Offer patients a sliding fee scale, and accept, and encourage enrollment in, Medicaid and Medicare.
  • Track patient outcomes using electronic medical records.


The Foundation recently completed a process resulting in the approval of capital grants to eight Federally Qualified Health Centers. At this time, we are not accepting requests from FQHCs located outside of our hometown areas (Maryland, NE Pennsylvania, and Hawaii). Please visit the website for updates.

Seeking a grant?

Answer the following questions specific to each of the goals outlined above. Please identify which of the goals within Basic Human Needs & Health most closely aligns with your program. If a question is not applicable or relevant to your program, please explain why.

Your first step in the grants process is the Letter of Inquiry (LOI)

LOIs are accepted on a rolling basis

  • Grants are made in one of three categories: General Operating Support, Program Support, Capital Project
  • Each type of grant requires its own specific LOI
  • The Foundation will confirm receipt of each LOI within 30 days

Please click here to review our guidelines for your LOI.

Please contact Nakia Horton, Gifts Administrator, at 410-654-8500, ext. 254 or, if you have any questions about the LOI process or the status of your LOI.

Questions for Goal #1 (a safe home):

  1. List the three major services that you provide in addition to housing or shelter.
  2. What percentage of the clients leaving your program each year go to a stable living situation?
  3. If you provide permanent housing, what percentage of your residents have remained housed for one year or longer?

Questions for Goal #2 (economic and social services support):

  1. If you provide financial assistance, confirm that all payments are made to a third party.
  2. What is the percentage of repeat clients that you see (% served this year and last year)?
  3. List the outcomes you track after providing emergency assistance, if any.

Questions for Goal #3 (food security):

  1. List the social services that you provide in addition to meals and/or food packages?
  2. List the food bank network(s) with which you are affiliated.
  3. Do you assist clients to apply for SNAP (food stamps)?

Questions for Goal #5 (health care):

  1. If you run a medical clinic, what is your patient payer mix (%Medicaid, %Self-Pay, %Private Insurance, etc.)?
  2. If you run an addictions treatment program, explain your mental health component.
  3. How has the Affordable Care Act impacted your operations to date?

For more information or if you have questions, please contact Amy Kleine, Program Director, Basic Human Needs; or 410-654-8500, x268.

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