Grant Tiers

Two people cooking in a kitchen.
The OHSU Knight Cancer Institute created the Community Partnership Program to support the development of sustainable collaborations with Oregon communities to address community-identified cancer needs. Grants fund projects anywhere along the cancer continuum from prevention and early detection to survivorship. Proposals that focus on addressing and/or are working directly with populations facing cancer-related health disparities are highly encouraged.

Three tiers of grants are available to meet the differing needs of Oregon communities:

Tier 1: Define Need

Tier 1: Define need awards

Amount: Up to $10,000     Program implementation time period: 12 months

Tier 1 grants offer initial funding to applicants to identify the most pressing cancer needs in their community through local data collection and analysis and/or coalition building.

Goal: The completion of a Tier one project should result in a defined set of cancer-related priorities and an action plan detailing strategies for addressing the pressing cancer issue(s) in their community.

Project examples:

  • Conduct a community cancer needs assessment. These projects should do one or more of the following:
    • Collect and assess baseline data on the selected local cancer issue.
    • Assess how a specific cancer topic(s) impacts an Oregon community.
    • Analysis of local data to define strengths, gaps, needs and opportunities specific to the cancer need and/or target population.
  • Establish or expand the focus of an existing a coalition to gain consensus on how to best address a local cancer issue. These projects should aim to do one or more of the following:
    • Build stakeholder and community capacity to prioritize local cancer needs
    • Establish local commitment to collectively act on a specific cancer topic.
    • Engage key stakeholders, including those individuals most affected by the issue(s), in cancer prevention and control planning efforts.
  • Other data collection and/or needs prioritization effort using an established model or framework.
All Tier 1 projects should result in the development of an action plan identifying local community cancer priorities and defining strategies to pilot test as the next step for action (Tier 2). Grantees should include a plan for sharing assessment findings with key partners and stakeholders.

Who should apply? Organizations that:

  • Are committed to gaining a deeper understanding of how a particular cancer issues and/or have a strong interest in improving the health outcomes of a specific Oregon community.
  • Applicants must be dedicated to utilizing data to develop an action plan for future implementation and evaluation —even if the cancer topic of interest cannot yet be fully articulated.
No previous experience in cancer or community research is necessary for a Tier 1 application.

Tier 2: Develop and Pilot

Tier 2: Develop and Pilot awards

Amount: Up to $25,000     Program implementation time period: 12 months

Tier 2 grants invest in the development and preliminary testing of a small-scale pilot project to address data-informed local cancer issue.

Goal: The completion of a Tier 2 project should result in preliminary data demonstrating the feasibility* and/or acceptability** of a selected approach or activity to improve a cancer-related outcome in a specific community.

*Feasibility: an assessment of the practicality of a proposed plan or approach prior to implementation.

**Acceptability: assessment of the target audience's views/perceptions/experiences/feedback about the proposed plan or approach.

Project examples:

  • Pilot test the feasibility and/or acceptability of a new cancer-related resource or an evidence-based approach. Projects may:
  • Select and /or adapt an evidence-based approach
  • Develop a new, innovative approach to improve a specific cancer outcome
All Tier 2 proposals should include a pilot project that collects data on facilitators and barriers to implementation as well as preliminary outcome data that can be used to support a Tier 3 proposal.

Who should apply? Organizations that:

  • Have defined the local cancer needs based on either a previous Tier 1 grant or other community needs assessment.
  • Are committed to determining how appropriate a proposed approach is for addressing an identified need in a specific community.
  • Are ready to develop the structure or framework to increase local capacity for a larger program implementation.
Funds may not be used for the preparation, distribution or use of materials to directly support or defeat proposed legislation.

Tier 3: Evaluate and Sustain

Tier 3: Evaluate and Sustain awards

Amount: Up to $50,000     Program implementation time period: 12 months

Tier 3 grants should aim to evaluate the outcomes and potential impact of a piloted program through implementation of a project or activity on a larger scale and establish plans for sustainability.


The completion of a Tier 3 project should result in data that demonstrates the efficacy of the approach in addressing a selected cancer issue in a specific community. The data should help to support the likelihood for the program/project to be sustained beyond the funding period through new funding, organizational support, and/or integration with a larger effort.

Project examples:

  • Evaluate an approach with demonstrated feasibility/acceptability and establish strategies for sustainability, through implementation of one of the following:
  •  An evidence-based intervention adapted for the target community 
  • A previously pilot tested project or program.
All Tier 3 projects are expected to implement in a sample large enough to determine impact of the selected approach in addressing a cancer-related issue, and include a plan to support short and long term sustainability of efforts.

Who should apply? Organizations that:

  • Have completed pilot testing of a program or approach to demonstrate its feasibility and/or acceptability to address a local cancer related need.
  • Are prepared to implement the adapted approach, collect data, and conduct analyses on a large enough scale to determine efficacy.
  • Have demonstrated capacity and support to establish strategies and partnerships to enhance sustainability.
Funds may not be used for the preparation, distribution or use of materials to directly support or defeat proposed legislation.