Marisla Foundation® was established in 1986 as a private, non-operating charitable institution. The Foundation awards grants quarterly in two program areas - Environment and Human Services - and a Special Interests category for proposals invited by the Board of Directors.
Marisla Foundation operates with three full-time program directors and one half-time assistant administrator. Of the hundreds of proposals received each year only a small number are funded, and they are currently funding few new grantees as they adjust the foundation's total annual funding to a sustainable level. For the convenience of organizations seeking support, the application process is short and concise. To manage applications received more efficiently, the Foundation uses an online application system exclusively. They do not require or accept letters of inquiry (LOIs).
The Foundation is able to support only those organizations that have received tax-exempt status under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code or that are governmental entities. Grants are not made to individuals or for activities that support candidates for political office. Through donor-advised fund partners, Marisla is able to recommend Environment Program funds to international projects for specific geographies. Marisla funds its Human Services grants in Orange County and Los Angeles through the Orange County Community Foundation.
The Foundation strongly discourages the submission of multiple applications from one organization. This includes chapters or field offices. The Foundation also will not review more than one application per year (any twelve-month period) from any organization, with the exception of organizations that are fiscal sponsors of nonprofits.