Frequently Asked Questions

Below are answers to some of our most frequently asked questions. If you have additional questions or desire more information, please feel free to contact us for assistance.

Learn more about our Foundation

Why Sustainable Solutions for Independence?

The Gibney Family Foundation strives to find sustainable solutions with every partnership that is made.  Sustainable solutions could be independence for the individuals who receives services from organizations, or it could be long-term solutions for the organization itself.  We take an individualized approach in working with our grantee’s and look for projects that will sustain, support, and provide long term solutions for all involved.

What is our focus?

The Gibney Family focuses 51% or more of their philanthropic efforts to organizations that support the blind and visually impaired.  The focus is on empowering individuals with life challenges within each grant sponsor’s community.

Why the narrow focus on the visually impaired?

Seeking to make a difference and achieve an impact within a community, Al knew TGFF needed a narrow focus. The blindness cause was chosen as the focus for TGFF because Al Gibney’s mother & sister were inspired by Helen Keller and they dedicated their philanthropic interests toward translating kids’ books into braille.

In the Founders own words:  “Embrace the concept of a narrowly focused mission as an opportunity to encourage a geographically scattered family to maximize successes as we work together toward a common goal. These unified efforts and resulting successes will allow passion to grow. The narrow focus will also honor the dedicated and inspirational efforts of the Donor’s mother and aunt who spent many hours enabling blind children to read through their efforts to translate children’s books into Braille” -Donor’s Intent

What is TGFF's fiscal year?

The Gibney Family Foundation’s fiscal year is January through December.

How was your endowment started?

The four original founders agreed to honor money that was preserved by our ancestors for a greater cause. They further honor their cause with a commitment to preserve at least 50% of the grant making to support blindness. The remainder balance of funding is to foster the passion of TGFF family grant sponsors. Pursuing individual passions gives family the energy and interest to keep The Gibney Family Foundation alive thus creating “Sustainable Solutions for Independence,” TGFF’s vision, for all kinds of folks who might benefit.

Where can I find out more about your financials?

In keeping with IRS requirements to fully disclose TGFF’s financial information and make its Form 990-PF widely available, please log into; register for a free account; and find “The Gibney Family Foundation” (TGFF) using Guidestar’s own search function. Click on our name and access the Form 990- PF directly. Please contact us above if you have questions on this or any topic.

Learn more about our grant making process

How do I know if my organization is a good fit for TGFF?

TGFF’s desire is to help inspire, invest, and involve ourselves and others in this process in order to further programs that ultimately achieve sustainability.

Organizations are encouraged to partner with a TGFF grant sponsor during the proposal development process in an effort to better understand the need, add value to the process, and facilitate effective grant making. Conference calls, site visits, and other contacts will be included during the proposal development process prior to submitting a formal proposal.

TGFF guidelines determine that family grant sponsors follow this partnering strategy.

What are TGFF's areas of impact?

The Gibney family focuses sustainable solutions for independence for populations who have challenges in their life, with a majority of funds going towards those individuals with visual impairments or who are blind. However, TGFF is not limited to these areas as family finds areas of impact where they can make a difference.

Is your foundation limited to certain geographical areas?

The Gibney Family Foundation partners with organizations where family grant sponsors live.  The sponsors will reach out to organizations whom they feel match our mission, values and donor’s intent.

Do you accept unsolicited Proposals?

We do not accept unsolicited proposals.  However, if you represent an organization that may fall under TGFF guidelines, particularly organizations working with the blind, please fill out the contact form on the contact page of this website.  We will contact you if we are currently funding in your area, our missions compliment each other and we can see past innovation in your field.

When can I apply?

TGFF determines grant proposals based on the following schedule:

Deadline for Grants Grant Determination Meeting Payment Processed before Grant Report Due
Quarter 1, 2022 January 1 February 9, 2022 March 1, 2022 January 1, 2023
Quarter 2, 2022 April 1 May 11, 2022 June 1, 2022 April 1, 2023
Quarter 3, 2022 July 1 August 10, 2022 September 1, 2022 July 1, 2023
Quarter 4, 2022 October 1 November 9, 2022 December 1, 2022 October 1, 2023

What is the difference between a grant and a mini grant?

Determine with your family grant sponsor what application is needed for your grant request:

  • Mini Grant Application: Mini grants are often used for a first time grant as we are getting to know an organization, or to support an organization where this type of funding better fits in their financial picture.  Mini Grants funding requests are limited to $5,000. An abbreviated report will be requested to enable the organization to share its success with the grant.  Access the mini grant application here.
  • TGFF regular application: The regular application is the one most often used by our grantees.  This application is to be used if you are requesting funds that exceed $5,000.  This application is slightly more detailed and will require the Grantee to report on its outcomes during and after the completion of the project.  Application can be downloaded here.

Can I apply for a multi-year grant?

We strongly encourage organizations to work together with their grant sponsor to submit an effective, sustainable  proposal. Many times this can be done with a one year grant, however we do realize some will require a multi-year grant to achieve the desired outcomes. Therefore, although rare, we do accept a very limited number of multi year grant submissions as any number of  things can change within your proposed project or program that may be realized in one year. 

Can we submit a common application?

We do not accept a common grant application. You can find our regular and mini grant application here.

What happens after I submit my grant application?

Once your application is submitted, the Grant Officers review all of the applications for that particular quarter and then discuss during a Grant Determination Meeting which typically happens about 4-6 weeks after the deadline. Communication from your grant sponsor and/or Chief Grant Officer will be made regarding the result of the meeting via email.