Privacy By Design For Everyone

Regional and Local Microgrant Fund

Update: We have extended the application deadline to January 15, 2022, or until all funds in this program have been allocated.

The Regional and Local Privacy Microgrants Fund promotes privacy and the struggle against surveillance in local or regional contexts in the United States by disbursing a $50,000 pool of funds through microgrants of up to $10,000 each. Grants support organizations and individuals at the frontlines of the fight to protect our privacy and push back against ever wider and deeper surveillance tools and practices. Despite the fact that groups that are in and of the communities most impacted by invasive surveillance are developing the new insights, practices, and ideas that will help protect us, this important work is often being done on a shoestring budget or by volunteers. We want to support your work.

Applications to this fund are open to organizations or individuals based in the United States which are working to promote privacy and oppose surveillance at the local or regional level. The organizations or individuals must have an annual budget of less than $1,000,000 in their last fiscal year. Projects must be completed within a year. Calyx is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, so we cannot fund lobbying or electoral politics.

To apply, please send a 1-2 page application to grants@calyxinstitute.org. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until we have allocated the funds in our budget, or December 15, 2021 January 15, 2022. The application should include:

  • Background information on you or your organization.
  • A description of your proposed project. This can be a new project or an existing one.
  • The amount of funds you are requesting (up to $10,000) and what the funds will be used for.
  • The impacts or outputs expected from this project. Please include any other information that will help us understand you and your proposed project.

We are interested in a wide range of topics, including but not limited to police surveillance, fusion centers, worker surveillance, student privacy, and housing surveillance. Projects could involve mapping, researching, resisting, raising awareness about, organizing around, or securing the release of public records regarding privacy and surveillance within your community.

Within a month of receiving your application, we will respond with an email accepting the application, rejecting the application, requesting clarification on some parts of the application, or a request for a revised and resubmitted application (we will only ask for this once if there are major clarifications required in the application or we are requesting a change in scope).

If you have an idea but are not sure if it fits within this fund’s focus, feel free to email us before drafting an application. We will update this page when funds are no longer available.

We will need a small amount of paperwork to disburse the funds, including a signed grant agreement. Recipients will be required to submit a 1-2 page report at the end of the project describing how it went, what impact it had, and what obstacles were encountered, as well as copies of any tangible outputs (e.g. research reports or links to git repositories). These are micro-grants, not mega-grants, so we want to keep the paperwork to an absolute minimum; we’ll just want to know how the project went so that we can promote you and your work and better understand how to support organizations like yours