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Community Matching Grants

Please note that as of 2021, this program has changed. If you've applied in the past, be sure to review the information provided here to familiarize yourself with the changes. The major changes have been bolded.

Program Overview

The City of Auburn's Neighborhood Program strives to create and maintain safe and friendly neighborhoods that keep Auburn a great place to work, live and raise a family. The Neighborhood Program offers Community Matching Grants to support partnerships between the City of Auburn and community groups and organizations to produce resident-initiated projects. The community identifies a project they would like to complete and determines what they are able to contribute (cash, volunteer hours, in-kind services, etc.) and then applies for a cash grant from the City to match the amount provided by the community. The City awards funds based on the benefits the proposed projects generate for Auburn residents, with a maximum of $2,500 per community

Applications for the 2021 project year are no longer being accepted. Applications for the 2022 program year will open in January 2022 and will be due by the end of March 2022.

What types of projects can this Grant be used for? 

  • beautification projects
  • clean-up activities
  • art projects, especially those that reflect the people of the neighborhood
  • activities that promote crime prevention
  • projects that address a particular neighborhood issue or concern
  • projects that help organize neighborhood groups and promote civic engagement
  • projects that engage the diverse populations within the targeted project area
  • community events to bring residents together

What are some examples of projects?

  • neighborhood sign installation
  • community garden
  • disaster preparedness projects
  • Rainworks - positive messages and art, created with a clear paint, that appear when it rains
  • Little Free Library - creation and installation
  • utility box art (graffiti prevention)

Generally, this Grant cannot be used for projects that are not in compliance with laws and regulations governing the city, county and state.  For a breakdown of ineligible projects, view the FAQ (PDF).

Community Matching Grant Program Process

What does the process for the Grant look like?

  • Community group fills out an application and submits it by the deadline. The deadline will typically be the end of March each year.  
  • Application is reviewed by appropriate City staff. If the application is approved…
  • Applicant will sign a contract with the City of Auburn that outlines the project and earmarks funding for the project
  • Applicant will complete the project within the calendar year
  • Applicant will submit receipts to the City
    • Receipts must be submitted by mid-December
  • Receipts that reflect costs related to the project (as outlined in the application/contract) will be reimbursed
  • Once reimbursement is approved, City of Auburn’s Finance Department will mail a check to the applicant

Thinking of applying for a Grant? Here are some things to consider:

Is my community group eligible to apply for a Community Matching Grant?

  • Applicants for the Matching Grant program must be a group of at least 3 or more people who are representing a community within the City limits of Auburn.
  • The applicants must either be a part of an incorporated entity (like an HOA) or partner with an organization.    
  • If you are not a part of an incorporated entity, the City can work with you to try to find a partner organization, but there are no guarantees that one will be available.
  • Community groups must be inclusive of all residents who would like to participate.

Is my project idea eligible for reimbursement through the Community Matching Grant?

  1. Does your project provide one of the below services to your community group?
    • Creates an attachment between residents and their community
    • Supports physical, social and mental well-being of residents 
    • Maintains safe and beautiful communities in Auburn
      Increase opportunities for residents to be civically engaged
    • Creates opportunities to connect residents with one another
  2. Do you have the support of the majority of the group directly affected by the project?
    • You must be able to answer "yes" to this question. A Support Form is required as part of your application
  3. Can you match the amount you are requesting from the City (max $2,500)? Ways to match include:
    • Volunteer hours (valued at $33/hour)
    • In-kind donations
    • Donated services
    • Cash
    • Supplies donated  
  4. Can your group afford the project in its entirety upfront while waiting for reimbursement from the Matching Grant Program? 

How does a community apply?

Applications for each program year will open in January and be due by the end of March. Projects will be reviewed by staff and selected based on their adherence to the guidelines. Applicants who do not receive funding are welcome to re-apply the following year.

Application Documents

Proposals must be made on the application form provided by the City. Telephone or verbal requests will not be considered.

Submit completed applications via mail or email:

  • City of Auburn
    ATTN: Neighborhood Programs
    25 West Main Street
    Auburn, Washington 98001
  • Email Neighborhood Programs