Grant Application

11th Hour Racing’s Grant Making Strategy

Improving Ocean Health through Innovation and Stewardship

11th Hour Racing is committed to mobilizing the sailing and maritime communities to create systemic change to restore ocean health. Fostering environmentally sustainable practices on and off the water is critical, and requires commitment across many sectors, including industry, research, nonprofits, and the marine community. Recognizing the unique platform offered by the sailing and marine industries, we see the opportunity to advance innovative practices, promote sustainable initiatives, and develop new ways to use resources in a more responsible manner. 11th Hour Racing also seeks to facilitate more responsible uses of energy and resources among the private sector, governments, and individuals.

We engage natural advocates for the oceans and waterways that rely on the health of these ecosystems for their livelihood and recreation. Our vision for the future is one where the oceans are cleaner and healthier because sailors and coastal communities act as strong ocean stewards working to improve and protect our oceans. This includes engaging in and encouraging the development of sustainable practices and technology ranging from increased use of renewable energy, a reduction of waste and plastics going into both landfills and the ocean, and improved water quality nearshore and offshore.

Our Strategy

11th Hour Racing seeks to advance innovative projects that improve the health of our oceans and address the dynamic environmental challenges facing the sailing and coastal communities. We seek proposals that align with 11th Hour Racing’s program strategy to advance one or more of our program’s focus areas:

  • Solutions that Reduce Plastic Pollution
  • Ocean Literacy and Stewardship amongst coastal communities
  • Clean Technologies and Best Practices that reduce the environmental impact of the maritime industry and coastal communities
  • Projects tackling water quality issues and climate change through Ecosystem Restoration

Examples of potential projects include but are not limited to:

Reduce Plastic Pollution: Innovative efforts that foster stakeholder engagement around reducing plastic pollution, showcase a new approach to addressing coastal pollution or increase action within communities. Does not include: large-scale ocean clean-up initiatives or community beach cleanups.

Clean Technologies and Best Practices: Efforts that advance emerging methods and/or technologies that reduce the environmental footprint of sailing-related activities; environmentally responsible vessel disposal methods or construction materials; sailmaking material alternatives or processes; alternative hull paints; or academic research that informs or advances initiatives that reduce the environmental footprint of the sailing and marine communities. Also includes improving coastal community practices regarding plastic waste or composting. Does not include: policy development; proven technologies (such as conventional solar photovoltaic), offshore clean-ups of marine debris, or advertising.

Ocean Literacy and Stewardship: Outreach and educational initiatives for any age focused on improving knowledge of ocean health issues and best practices. Target audiences may include: youth, professional or amateur sailors, maritime industry members, or waterfront communities. Emphasis will be given to projects focused on innovative communication campaigns, citizen science, and new methods of engagement. Programs specializing in increasing stewardship, access, and ocean literacy in underserved, urban communities are of particular interest. Does not include: curriculum development; or general funding for educational programming.

Tackling Climate Change & Water Quality with Ecosystem Restoration: Using coastal habitats like mangroves, salt marsh, and seagrass to sequester carbon (commonly referred to as Blue Carbon), using oysters and vertical farming to improve coastal water quality or innovative approaches to restoring coral health. Does not include: coastal infrastructure projects, conservation easements, or land acquisition.

Evaluation Criteria

Project submissions are evaluated based on the following criteria:

  • Environmental impact: the magnitude of the project’s environmental benefits
  • Sailing and marine community engagement: level of outreach to or involvement with the sailing and marine community
  • Capacity and Organizational Expertise: organizational capacity and qualifications necessary to implement the proposed project
  • Innovation and Creativity: how unique the project is or the methodology used
  • Feasibility of implementation: technological, financial, and political factors that may influence the success of the project

Strong consideration will be given to: projects that involve collaborations and stakeholder engagement; model best practices; can demonstrate measurable outcomes in a one-year timeframe, and share successes broadly. For anything we fund, and especially demonstration projects or place-based work, we would like to see opportunities for broader impact through replicating or scaling.


We will prioritize projects led by 501(c)(3) organizations but other types of non-profit or charitable entities may apply as long as the proposed project addresses one or more of 11th Hour Racing’s strategic goals outlined above. 11th Hour Racing awards grants in the U.S. and globally, therefore international organizations are welcome to apply.  

Projects seeking funding for political advocacy, lobbying, litigation, fundraising, or legally mandated mitigation projects are not eligible.

Grant Awards

Current grants are 1 year in length, we generally do not offer multi-year grants.

Typical grant awards range from $10,000 – $100,000, with an average grant size being $25,000. First-time grants to new organizations are generally smaller in size.

Our grant funding must be tied to a specific project, with measurable outcomes. We currently do not offer general funding, capital or infrastructure grants, or endowment funding.

Grant Review Periods

We currently hold at least two grant reviews each year. Deadlines for submissions are as follows:

  • March 1st, 2019: Grants awarded in May/June 2019
  • September 1st, 2019: Grants awarded in early 2020


Grant Application
Please provide a summary of your proposed work, including whatever information you think is most important for us to know and best describes your effort or idea. Please include in your description: • How this project supports 11th Hour Racing's goal of transforming and/or leveraging the sailing and marine communities for the betterment of the marine environment; • Anticipated outcomes of this project by the end of the 1-year grant; and • Partners or collaborators on the project. For anything we fund, and especially demonstration projects or place-based work, we would like to see opportunities for scaling or replicating for broader impact. (Limit 3,000 characters)
Please indicate the amount of funding you are requesting from 11th Hour Racing for this project. Total Budget for Project
Please indicate the total amount needed to complete this project.
Please answer yes or no, and if no list what type of organization you are