California Animal Welfare Funders Collaborative

What is the California Animal Welfare Funders Collaborative (CAWFC)?

Created in August 2019, the CAWFC brings together grant-makers to creatively and flexibly respond to the needs of animal shelters throughout the state of California. Founding members include Annenberg Foundation, Best Friends Animal Society, Maddie’s Fund, and Michelson Found Animals Foundation.

Our California animal shelters and the pets we care for need California-specific solutions. So, let’s make that happen. 

2021 CAWFC Funding Opportunity 

The California Animal Welfare Funder’s Collaborative is pleased to bring you additional information about this year’s granting cycle.

As you recall, in February 2020, we hosted learning summits throughout the state. Attendance to one of the summits qualified your organization for a grant through the collaborative.

With the expansion and access to so many virtual learning opportunities recently, we’ve decided not to host our own learning experience this year. However, we are happy to announce that grants will still be available! We want to help you take the inspiration for new programs/projects you’ve gotten from the various virtual learning sessions offered throughout the past year and bring them to life.

Please see the information below to learn how your organization can qualify and apply for a grant from the collaborative this year. 

Grant Requirements

  • Attendance to at least ONE virtual learning experience.
  • Examples of virtual learning experiences include but are not limited to: CASCAR calls run by UC Davis team, AmPA! Wednesday summit, AAWA conference session, Best Friends Town Hall(s)Cal Animals Animal Care ConferenceHSUS Animal Care Expo, etc.
  • Grant requests should be informed by something you’ve learned and hoping to implement with this funding. Projects should propose innovative ideas in improving animal welfare, preserving human-animal connections, or launching lifesaving or field services.
  • TIP: Think about a webinar/training/meeting you attended that sparked an idea but funding was a barrier to implementing that program.
  • New or expanded project that extends above and beyond your existing work.
  • Applicant must be a private or government shelter or animal control agency.
  • Note – Private or government shelters or animal control agencies may co-apply with a rescue organization, but the shelter/animal control agency must be the main applicant. If awarded and want/need your grant funds to be routed to your co-applicant please note that in your application.
  • Current CAWFC grant holders may apply for a year two grant but the project must be different than what you were awarded for in year one.

How to Apply

Complete the grant application HERE.

DEADLINE – Friday, April 30th, 5 pm PST

Please send any questions about the grant process to

2020 California Animal Shelter Summits

Taking place in Southern, Central and Northern California, these summits were a chance for local leaders like you to get the lowdown on best practices and new ideas geared toward the specific needs of your city, county and the pets you care for.

Just by attending, shelters became eligible for lifesaving grants through the CAWFC. With at least $200,000 in available funds, the Collaborative awarded grants to shelters that proposed innovative ideas in lifesaving, improving animal welfare, preserving human-animal connections, and reducing shelter deaths.

In 2020, registration was open to private shelters with municipal contract, private shelters without municipal contract, municipal shelters, and animal control agencies across California.  

CAWFC Founding Members