New York State Funeral Directors Association

Advancing the Understanding of Death, Dying, and Bereavement

The New York State Tribute Foundation awards grants to support projects, research and education. Below you will find information on the purpose of our grant and scholarship programs and details on how to apply.

To achieve greatest impact with limited resources, our Board of Directors has identified several priority funding areas that guide our funding decisions. These projects can take many different forms: lecture series, research programs, conferences, educational programs or materials and professional scholarships. The NYS Tribute Foundation is engaged in programs and initiatives that focus on three core principles:

Consumer education and outreach programs working to raise public awareness regarding death, dying and bereavement. Research grants may include scientific, cultural, anthropological, epidemiological and environmental research programs that relate to and advance general understanding of death, dying, bereavement and the changing professional and societal approaches to end-of-life.

The NYS Tribute Foundation seeks to support agencies and organizations whose mission includes activities that significantly enhance the understanding of death, dying and bereavement.

Scholarships will be made with the goal of increasing the number of new funeral service professionals and encouraging previously licensed funeral directors to return to the profession. Scholarships will also be offered to help pay for ongoing professional education.

Grants will also be considered to encourage development of state-of-the-art educational programming and best practice curricula that can be offered to allied professionals in related human service fields.

The NYS Tribute Foundation gives highest priority to projects that are consistent with our organization's overall guiding principles:

  • To foster a renewed and modern interest in scientific and educational programs for better understanding of death, dying and bereavement
  • To aid in the development of new and existing agencies and institutions that provide progressive educational activities and scientific programs
  • To aid in the study and the promotion of highest ethical practices within the funeral service profession
  • To encourage and assist qualified candidates who aspire to a career in funeral service
  • To encourage and support research and scholarly activities that help to advance the understanding of death, dying, and bereavement
  • To foster collaboration and community-based partnerships between institutions, industry and government to enable the sharing of people, ideas and tools for both policy planning and times of crisis

The NYS Tribute Foundation provides support for the following types of grants:

Program Grants: Program grants support operational costs needed to underwrite specific programs or projects. Eligible programs may include (but are not limited to) publications, conferences, seminars, educational material development, or curriculum development.

Scholarships: Professional scholarships will be provided for individuals who aspire to careers in funeral service. These scholarships can be utilized for both college-level courses and ongoing professional development.

Seed Money: Seed money grants are provided to help new organizations get started. Organizations that will qualify for seed money grants must fall under the funding priorities developed by the NYS Tribute Foundation.

Research: Research grants are provided to cover the costs of investigations and clinical trials, including demonstration and pilot projects that specifically relate to, or advance the goals and objectives of the Foundation.

NYS Tribute Foundation grants range from $500 to $15,000. The Foundation will occasionally consider multi-year requests for funding of project costs, technical assistance, and collaborative activities that significantly enhance the understanding of death, dying and bereavement.

Grants that do not fall into the above noted funding priorities may also be considered at the discretion of the NYS Tribute Foundation Board of Directors. The Foundation does not provide support for dinners, dances, advertising, fundraising contests, raffles, booster clubs, endowments, capital campaigns, deficit financing, loans or political organizations.

Eligibility and Exclusions

The NYS Tribute Foundation will consider grant requests from not-for-profit organizations with 501(c)(3) status who are located within New York State and registered with the New York State Department of Law Charities Bureau. In addition, individuals interested in funeral service and other professions related to death, dying and bereavement are eligible for our professional scholarships. Examples of possible recipients include (but are not limited to):

  • Public and private schools, colleges, and universities
  • Social service organizations
  • Environmental organizations

The NYS Tribute Foundation cannot respond to requests for financial assistance for, or on behalf of, individuals seeking assistance with burial costs.

The process involves submitting a letter of inquiry, developing a full proposal and then review and decisionmaking.

Grant applicants must possess 501(c)(3) status as a tax exempt not-for-profit organization. Applicants must submit a letter of inquiry which briefly outlines the project/program for which funding is sought. Organizations should explain how program goals relate to foundation goals and objectives. Letters of inquiry are accepted and reviewed throughout the year.


Grant application and guidelines.

Letters should not exceed two pages, and should include:

  • The legal name used by the applicant exactly as recorded by the Internal Revenue Service
  • IRS tax identification number
  • A concise statement of the purpose of the request, its significance and strengths, and the results sought
  • An estimated project budget (if project funds are being applied for) and the current annual budget for the organization
  • Organizational and professional capacity and expertise
  • A timeline for the implementation of the project and for intended results.

Letters of Inquiry should be mailed to:

New York State Tribute Foundation, Inc.
1 South Family Drive
Albany, New York 12205

Following receipt and review of the initial letter of inquiry, selected applicants will be invited to submit a full proposal for detailed review by the Foundation Board of Directors. Choose from one of the following options ONLY IF YOU HAVE BEEN INVITED TO SUBMIT A FULL PROPOSAL BY THE TRIBUTE FOUNDATION.

Download the funding guidelines including the funding application


Download the funding application only

Completed applications are reviewed by the Foundation staff and Board of Directors. As part of the review process, Foundation staff may call to inquire about the application or to clarify information submitted in the application. The Board of Directors is responsible for final funding decisions.

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New York State 
Tribute Foundation

1 South Family Drive
Albany, NY 12205
Phone: 518.452.8230
Fax: 518.452.8667