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City Manager’s Office

Grant and Aid Program for Not-For-Profit Agencies

The City of Winter Haven has provided grant money from the General Fund in one form or another to various Winter Haven not-for-profit agencies as far back as the 1970’s. The goal of these allocations is to ensure residents of Winter Haven have access to the services provided by local not-for-profit providers. These agencies offer services the City of Winter Haven does not or that are complimentary to and consistent with City goals, extending additional benefit to our residents.

Grant and Aid Process and Guidelines

Not-for-profit agencies are invited to submit an application for funding through the Grant and Aid Program each year.

Eligibility Requirements

  • Not-for-Profit Agencies that provide services to Winter Haven residents are eligible to apply for a grant each year through the Grant and Aid application.
  • Mandatory training sessions will be offered leading up to the application window. Applicants are required to attend one of the three training sessions to be eligible to apply for the grant. Each training session is the same, and applicants only need to attend one. Only those who attend training will be granted access to the grant application.

Click your preferred date below to register for mandatory training:

Funding Amounts

  • First-Time / New Applicants: The maximum amount that can be awarded to a new applicant is $5,000 in their first grant cycle. Applicants are considered first-time if they did not receive funding in the most current fiscal year. The fiscal year runs October 1 – September 30.
  • Returning Applicants: The maximum amount that can be awarded to a a returning applicant is $20,000 in a single cycle. The only exception to this are agencies presently funded above this threshold in the current fiscal year. Returning applicants currently funded above $20,000 may be considered for funding up to the same amount of their current grant award.
  • Single Initiative Applicants: The City Commission may allocate funds toward a large, single initiative with a maximum award amount of $40,000. This is designed to support capital improvements or fund large programmatic efforts. Not-for-profit agencies may request this larger allocation once every five years.

All funding amounts are contingent on the number of applications received and the total amount of funding available. Applicants may not be awarded at the full amount requested or the maximum amount allowed.

Application Process

Not-for-profit agencies should prepare the following documents and information prior to beginning the application:

  • Project Budget Sheet – Click here to download the project budget template. Fill in the information for your project and save a new copy of the sheet. This must be uploaded to the application when prompted.
  • Sunbiz Annual Report – Download your most recent annual report from and be prepared to upload it to the application when prompted. If you organization does not have an annual report, please upload your Articles of Incorporation from If you do not have your annual report saved, you can search for it here:
  • IRS Determination Letter – This is the letter provided by the IRS granting your organization tax-exempt status. If you do not have this letter already saved, you can search for it here:

Once all documentation is gathered, ensure you are prepared to answer questions about these topics:

  • Your organization. This includes information such as your mission, vision, contact information and leadership team.
  • Your project. This is the project, initiative or program you are requesting funds for. Be prepared to provide a detailed description of the effort, how you plan to measure the impact, how many Winter Haven residents it will benefit, and any funding sources outside of the City’s Grant.
  • Evaluation Method and Previous Results. If you have received grant and aid funds from the City of Winter Haven in the current fiscal year, please be prepared to detail the results you have achieved with those funds. All applicants will be required to provide an evaluation plan detailing how you will track and evaluate the results from any funding you may receive as a result of your application.

When you are ready to complete the application, please click the button below. The application needs to be completed in a single session, though it won’t time out if your browser is left open.

The application window for the 2023/24 Fiscal Year is March 1, 2023 through April 15, 2023.

Application Review

The Grant and Aid Review Committee review all applications received by the cycle’s deadline and make funding recommendations to the City Commission. The eight-member Grant and Aid Review Committee is comprised of the following individuals:

  • City of Winter Haven City Commission Appointees:
    • Minister Abdurrahim Al-Khatib
    • Mr. Alex Cam
    • Dr. Steve Negley
    • Mr. Alex Santiago
    • Ms. Tina Summerlin
  • Procurement Manager: Bethany Owen
  • Director of Diversity and Inclusivity: Christine Samuel
  • Chief Accountant, Finance Department: Allen Weeks


  • February 18, 2023, 10:00 a.m. – Training Session Option 1
  • February 28, 2023, 6:00 p.m. – Training Session Option 2
  • March 1, 2023 – Application Window Opens
  • March 9, 2023, 2:00 p.m. – Training Session Option 3
  • March 30, 2023 – Reporting due from fiscal year 2022 / 23 recipients.
  • April 15, 2023 – Application Window Closes
  • June 2023 – Staff presents the recommendations of the Grant and Aid Review Committee to the City Commission. The final decision on funding is made by the City Commission.
  • September 2023 – Grant and Aid funding included in the budget process.
  • October 2023 – Grant and Aid checks are sent to awarded recipients.
  • November 2023 – March 2024 – Recipients may be asked to provide an update on the utilization of funds in writing or via an in-person presentation to the City Commission.

FY 2023-2024 Awards

Organization Award Amount
Angels Care Center of Eloise, Inc. 2,500.00
Aspiring Aviators Aero Club* 7,000.00
Boys & Girls Clubs of Polk County 45,000.00
Bruised but not Destroyed, Inc. 10,000.00
Catholic Charities of Central FL, Inc. 2,500.00
Concerned Citizens of Winter Haven, Inc. 10,000.00
Cypress Gardens Water Ski Team, Inc. 5,000.00
Cypress Junction Montessori 5,000.00
Faith Xtreme 7,000.00
Forever Outreach, Inc. 2,500.00
GCTE Center Inc. 10,000.00
Girls Incorporated of Winter Haven 18,000.00
Habitat For Humanity of East Polk County, Inc. 3,000.00
Havendale Community Development 4,000.00
Helpers One 2 Another 2,500.00
Human Environment Linking People, Inc 2,500.00
Jewett Golf Association 5,000.00
Junior League of Greater Winter Haven 4,000.00
Meals on Wheels of Polk County, Inc. 17,500.00
Neighborhood Service Center 20,000.00
Peyton’s Purpose Inc 3,000.00
Polk County Pressure Youth Sports 1,000.00
Polk State College Foundation 5,000.00
Project Love of Eloise, Inc. 2,500.00
SOAR Education 2,500.00
StepN2ourlane 10,000.00
The Haley Center, Inc. 33,000.00
The Historic Ritz Theatre, Inc. 40,000.00
The Lighthouse for the Blind & Low Vision 5,000.00
The Mission of Winter Haven 2,500.00
The Public Education Partnership of Winter Haven 20,000.00
Top Buttons 5,000.00
We Care of Central Florida, Inc. 3,000.00


The City of Winter Haven staff is available to answer any questions you may have about the Grant and Aid Program. Please direct questions to the Office of Public Affairs and Communication.