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Grant Reporting Guidelines


The Foundation requires interim and final narrative and financial reports on a pre-established schedule.  Narrative and financial reports should be submitted together on the agreed upon due dates, covering the periods specified in the Foundation’s award letter.  The accounting (including interest earned) should be specific to the grant; other Foundation grants must be separately reported.  Grantees are required to use the same budget categories and template used in the grant proposal for line-by-line comparison.  If unusual circumstances arise that may occasion delays, please promptly inform Foundation staff.  The Foundation may suspend and require the return of funds for delinquent reporting.  All reports should be submitted electronically as MS Word and Excel documents, or as searchable PDF files.

Please do not hesitate to contact the Foundation with any questions regarding these guidelines.


Reporting Components

In narrative and financial reports, the Foundation expects grantees to describe and evaluate the activities undertaken and the use of grant funds during the reporting period.

The narrative portion of the report should include the following:

  1. grantee’s legal name and mailing address and full contact details of the principal investigator or project leader;

  2. Foundation’s grant reference number;

  3. exact period covered by the report;

  4. 3-6 page executive summary of the activities during the reporting period setting forth:
    • a description of the project and purpose of the grant;
    • a summary of progress made and significant accomplishments;
    • any setbacks or challenges;
    • significant board, management, or staff changes;
    • plans and goals for the upcoming year;

  5. list or description of any recent evaluations, publications, news articles, or other materials related to the grant;

  6. narrative explanation of any significant variances (variance of more than 10 percent and above $500) between proposed spending and actual spending in each category;

  7. original signature of the principal investigator, including date of execution; and

  8. appendix with additional information, as needed.

The financial accounting should include:

  1. the original amount of the grant, interest income earned, and the remaining balance;

  2. the budget as originally proposed for the reporting period;

  3. expenditures for the reporting period using the same expense categories set forth in the proposal budget; and

  4. the original signature of a financial officer, including date of execution. 


(If instructed by Foundation staff, please use the “Budget and Financial Report” template available here, with instructions for completion available here.)



Administration of the Grant

Grantees are expected to observe the following grant guidelines:

  1. Obtain advance written approval by the Foundation for material changes to grant terms, including modification of purpose, reallocation of grant funds, proposed extension, and transfer.

  2. Promptly notify the Foundation in writing of significant changes in staffing, scheduling, or budgeting.

  3. Retain accounting records, detailing all receipts and expenditures, for a minimum of three years following submission of the final report.



Grants with Intellectual Property

Please describe the intellectual property created pursuant to the terms of the proposal and intellectual property agreement and whether and how any software and/or digitized content has been made publicly available.

When preparing the final report, include any codes, licenses, or related technologies developed during the grant term, or explain where and how the Foundation may obtain them.

The Foundation’s Policy on Intellectual Property is available here



Grants to Non-US Institutions

Non-US institutions should report on expenditures using the Foundation’s “Budget and Financial Report for Grants to Non-US Institutions” template, submitted at the time of the proposal.  Grantees may refer to exchange rates available at www.oanda.com.



Endowment Grants

The Foundation requires that endowment funds be invested and utilized in a prudent manner that reflects the purpose of the endowment grant.  Grantees are expected to report on the investment performance and use of endowment funds using the Foundation’s “Endowment Financial Report” template.  The Foundation requires the form to be signed by a financial officer of the organization.

If income from the endowment has declined during the reporting period or is not sufficient to cover budgeted expenditures, the narrative should describe how the organization is managing the shortfall.



Matching Grants

Please briefly describe progress made toward meeting the matching conditions of the grant and use of non-Mellon matching funds. 



Click here to download a full copy of the “Grant Reporting Guidelines.”

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