Frequently Asked Questions

We’ve collected answers to common questions about the Powering Climate & Infrastructure Careers Challenge below. If you don’t find the information you need here, please email us at


Who is eligible to apply?

To be considered for the Powering Climate & Infrastructure Careers Challenge, primary applicants must be:

  • Based in the United States.
  • A 501(c)(3)-designated nonprofit or fiscally sponsored entity, public agency, or Native government or entity.
  • Using, applying for, or otherwise leveraging climate, infrastructure, or other government funding.
  • Committed to advancing career pathways and improving economic mobility, especially for underinvested communities.
To be clear, are government agencies eligible to receive funding?

Yes. The Families and Workers Fund can support government agencies directly or via affiliated 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations or fiscally sponsored projects based in the U.S.

Are Native governments eligible to apply for the Challenge? Are Tribal entities eligible to apply?

Any Native and/or Tribal government and their entities are eligible to apply for either track of the Challenge. 

Can we submit an application with a partner?

Yes, as long as the primary applicant is an eligible entity, we encourage collaborative applications. We ask, however, that only one organization be listed as the primary applicant in an application. Potential secondary partners could include: unions, training providers, employers with hiring commitments, among others.

Is the Challenge focused on specific climate or infrastructure jobs or outcomes? How do I know if my project is the right fit for this initiative?

Your organization does not need to meet specific climate or infrastructure standards to be eligible for the Challenge. We’re eager to hear about wide-ranging projects with potential to benefit from federal funding – from transportation and water management to broadband and solar. We’re most interested in identifying projects where philanthropic support can make the biggest impact in terms of unlocking opportunities for underinvested communities. Review our Round 1 selection criteria to better understand how we’ll select awardees.

The website lists two possible applicant tracks. What is the difference between these two tracks?

The Powering Climate & Infrastructure Careers Challenge will categorize applicants and award grants in two tracks:

  1. Training and Career Pathways focuses on labor supply by investing in catalytic models for training and career pathways that connect diverse workers to quality climate and infrastructure careers. For this track we envision applicants representing higher ed/community colleges, workforce agencies, community-based organizations, and other training providers in any U.S. state or Native land.
  2. Government Planning and Implementation will grant funding to state, Native, and local agencies and their nonprofit partners to support workforce planning procurement, and job quality efforts to ensure effective, impactful delivery of federal funds and effective implementation. In track 2 we invite government agencies representing the following states AZ, CA, FL, GA, IL, MI, NC, NM, NV, NY, OH, PA, TX, WI and those representing Native lands across the United States.

While these tracks are designed with different organizations and project types in mind, the selection process does not change based on the track selected; rather, this categorization allows the Fund to better understand the context for and support the needs of different types of applicants. If you are submitting a proposal for a project with substantial overlap between the two tracks, you may select “both” as an answer choice. 

What are the financial or budgetary restrictions for this grant?

The Powering Climate & Infrastructure Careers Challenge will award core support grants that can be used in any way that directly advances the mission of the project, from funding wraparound supports (e.g., child care stipends, transportation) and supplies for training program participants to dedicated staffing to enable deeper coordination between government agencies and community-based partners on implementation of labor standards. This funding is designed to be flexible and to fill gaps that public dollars cannot in order to support the effective implementation of high-impact projects.


When is the Powering Climate & Infrastructure Careers Challenge application due?

All Round 1 applications must be submitted by January 19, 2024, at 11:59 pm Eastern Time.

How is the application process structured?

The Powering Climate & Infrastructure Careers Challenge is structured in three phases. All participants must submit a Round 1 application, from which select applicants will be invited to submit a Round 2 application. Finally, a subset of these applicants will be invited to interview with the Families and Workers Fund, and in some cases Fund staff may conduct a site visit.

How do I submit an application to the Powering Climate & Infrastructure Careers Challenge?

The Round 1 application must be submitted through this online form. We are unable to accept paper applications, but the Fund aspires to make this process as accessible as possible. Please contact us to explore additional accommodations if needed.

What can I expect from the Powering Climate & Infrastructure Careers Challenge application?

The Round 1 application is designed to be as simple as possible for applicants while asking for enough information to ensure that the Families and Workers Fund and its advisors can make well-informed selection decisions. A PDF version of the Round 1 application is available here; however, the Round 1 application must be submitted through this form.

The Round 2 application builds off the information provided in Round 1, giving room for applicants to share additional depth and context about their work. 

Can my organization submit more than one application?

An organization may only submit one application for which they would be the primary recipient of grant funding. However, an organization can join other applications as a secondary collaborator, including as a sub-grantee.

How does the Challenge define “leverage”?
Simply put, to us, leverage includes funds both raised and impacted. The Challenge aims to provide philanthropic support that can make the biggest difference in terms of unlocking opportunities for underinvested communities. Our available funding, however, is significantly less than the full scale of investment needed by the field. One way the Fund can maximize its impact through the Challenge, then, is to understand how applicants can leverage our grant funding. For example, some applicants may be able to use our funds to attract other public or private investments, while others may use grants to shape or impact additional funding in the field (for instance, building good jobs standards into publicly-funded projects, or guiding oversight or implementation of funding).

Selection & Award Details

How will Round 1 applications be evaluated?

All eligible Round 1 applications will be evaluated by at least two reviewers — staff and advisors of the Families and Workers Fund – against these five scoring criteria.

How many awardees will be supported through the Challenge?

We anticipate naming between 10 and 20 awardees, but the exact number of grant recipients will depend on the quantity and quality of applications received. Additionally, we ask all Round 1 applicants whether they’d be comfortable with the Fund sharing their application details with its funder network, which we hope may unlock additional funding opportunities. 

How will funds be disbursed?

Grant amounts will range between $150,000 and $1.5 million, disbursed over the course of one to three years. The Fund will work in partnership with grantees to determine the best streamlined disbursement strategy following their selection.

What are the reporting expectations for this grant?

The Families and Workers Fund collects quantitative and qualitative data through an annual grantee survey, and holds three learning calls with each of our grantees annually. We use these data and insights to generate aggregated fund-level outcomes, along with lessons learned and implications for strategy and future investments. As a funder collaborative, we strive to uplift our grantees’ work and outcomes within philanthropy and among key stakeholders in the field. Detailed financial reporting is not required of grant recipients.


Where can I review legal documents associated with the Challenge?

Please see here for a disclaimer associated with the Round 1 application, and here for Terms of Use associated with the Round 2 application. Challenge awardees will enter into separate agreements prior to the disbursement of funds; see here for a template for government agencies and here for grant guidelines for nonprofit organizations.

Where can I learn more?

As a lean organization, the Families and Workers Fund is unable to schedule one-on-one conversations with all prospective applicants. But to learn more about the Challenge, we encourage you to review the recording of an informational webinar here, that took place on December 12, 2023. Please email us with any questions at

My project is ineligible for the Challenge but seems relevant to the broader mission of the Families and Workers Fund. How can I share my organization’s work with the Fund?

Thank you for your interest. The Fund provides other funding opportunities beyond this Challenge by invitation. Please feel free to email