11th Hour Racing’s Grantmaking Strategy

11th Hour Racing fosters systemic change to restore ocean health — our vision for the future includes cleaner, healthier waterways through strong local stewardship and collective action around the world.

As the climate crisis intensifies, so does the impact on ocean health. We need a global paradigm shift, from an extractive economy that depletes our natural resources to a sustainable economy that uses resources wisely and protects our ocean. We work to facilitate this transition by supporting local solutions to global problems, led by community organizations and industry leaders. 

By supporting local pilot programs that model best practices of sustainability, restore coastal ecosystems, and advance ocean stewardship, our grantees are creating systemic change to restore ocean health. We are working toward a future of cleaner, healthier waterways through strong local stewardship and collective action around the world.

Focus Areas

11th Hour Racing seeks proposals that align with one or more of our focus areas:

  • Ocean Literacy & Stewardship – increase the understanding and appreciation of the importance of healthy oceans and waterways to communities through experiential learning, citizen science, and powerful story-telling
  • Clean Technologies & Best Practices – advance practices and technologies in coastal communities and the marine industry that reduce waste, prevent plastic pollution, improve water quality, and assess new circular solutions
  • Ecosystem Restoration – improve water quality, bolster coastal resilience, and sequester carbon through coastal habitat restoration

Further examples of potential projects include but are not limited to:

Ocean Literacy & Stewardship: Outreach and educational initiatives for any age focused on improving knowledge of ocean health issues and best practices. Emphasis will be given to projects focused on youth-led initiatives, citizen science, and experiential education. 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.

Clean Technologies & Best Practices: Efforts that advance emerging methods and/or technologies that reduce the environmental footprint of coastal communities, sailing-related activities, and the maritime industry. Activities may include improving coastal community practices regarding plastic pollution prevention or food waste such as composting; environmentally responsible vessel disposal methods or construction materials; sailmaking or boatbuilding material alternatives or processes. Does not include: policy development; proven technologies (such as conventional solar photovoltaic), community beach or offshore clean-ups of marine debris, or advertising.

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
  • 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.

Eligibility

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 Application:

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We hold two grant reviews each year. Deadlines for submissions are:

  • January 31st, 2021: Grants awarded in May 2021
  • June 15th, 2021: Grants awarded in October 2021

*Organizations are welcome to apply before the dates listed above. Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis, however, responses dated before our scheduled biannual grant reviews are not guaranteed.