The Osa Foundation supports organizations that empower human potential in underserved communities by creating Opportunities, offering targeted Support and improving Access to resources.                 

The Osa Foundation’s work is grounded in the following values:

  • Self-reliance: We value the dignity of hard work and consider self-reliance and sustainability to be the ultimate goal of our philanthropy.

  • Equity: We believe that every person should have access to the resources needed to pursue and achieve their goals.

  • Tolerance: We value and respect the diversity in our society.

  • Innovation: We value critical, original thinking and creative problem solving.

  • Integrity: We value honesty and transparency: accordingly we endeavor to conduct our work in a manner consistent with the highest ethical standards.

We seek to support grantee organizations that embody these beliefs and values.

To learn more about our story and investment philosophy, please click here.

Application Process

The Osa Foundation currently accepts grant proposals on an invitation only basis. Through a rigorous assessment process, we identify and select results-oriented organizations whose programs and infrastructure bring innovation, excellence and sustainability to bear in executing their mission. The Osa Foundation makes grant decisions on a rolling basis pursuant to its grantees’ preferred timeframes.

Upon invitation, please submit the following proposal materials electronically to Amy Sauer, Strategic Advisor, The Osa Foundation at

Narrative: (suggested length is 3 pages)

  • The purpose of your request, including description of the program, population served, and results to date
  • A specific description of the results that you intend to achieve with this grant and description of measurements or indicators you will use to gauge your impact, including targets.  If awarded a grant, you will be asked to report on these results at the end of the grant cycle.
  • Organization overview
    • Your mission, history of accomplishments and growth, strategic goals, and vision 
    • Summary of programs, population served, and track-record of impact

See Required Attachments here.

To learn more about when you will hear from us regarding your grant request submission, please click here.

Grant Reporting

All grantees are asked to submit a grant report at the end of the grant period.  Your grant award letter will indicate the suggested timeframe for submitting your report. The grant report shall include a discussion of your accomplishments for the grant period compared to the stated goals and targets that you previously laid out in your proposal.  Please also share lessons learned and an identification of where you fell short of your goals or identified areas for improvement or opportunity.  The suggested length is two pages.

Our Current Grantees:


Education Innovation:

Cather Elementary (ThinkCERCA Implementation)

Educators 4 Excellence Chicago

Intrinsic Schools

John Palmer Elementary School (ThinkCERCA Implementation)

LEAP Innovations

Surge Institute

Teachers Supporting Teachers

Teach Plus Illinois

The Chicago Public Education Fund

UChicago Consortium on School Research


Grantee Blogs

We are honored to highlight blogs written by our grantees. We invite you to read how they are making an impact. We look forward to showcasing recent blogs from other grantees each month. 

Featured Blog


LEAP Innovations | April 2019

Now More Than Ever: Making Equity THE Education Focus in Chicago

Education is both the lifeblood and litmus test of a city, equal parts a reflection of where we are and a window into where we are headed. As such, the school system has rightly been a central issue in Chicago’s upcoming mayoral elections. Society is transforming faster than it ever has, and the decisions of our next leader will impact the fate of Chicago education for decades to come. As we proceed into the future, it is vital that we become even more vigilant in addressing our critical need for equity in the classroom.

Chicago Public Schools’ graduation rates for students of color are at record highs, but our graduates are still not set up for success in the world that awaits. It’s projected by the University of Chicago Consortium on School Research that only 19 percent of 2017 CPS graduates will earn a bachelor’s degree in 10 years. For Latinx young men, this estimate drops to 13 percent. For Black young men, it drops to 10.

Healthy Schools Campaign    June 2o19

Healthy Schools Campaign

June 2o19

A National Dialogue on Education and Health

On May 28, Healthy Schools Campaign partnered with the Bipartisan Policy Center to host a dialogue with national leaders highlighting the inextricable linkage between education and health. This exciting event was attended in person or online by over 200 people, and was streamed live on CSPAN-2. HSC’s President + CEO Rochelle Davis offered the opening remarks, highlighting what we’ve learned from almost two decades of work in this field, the challenges and opportunities we see — and why this work is more important than ever.

Sweet Water Foundation    July 2019

Sweet Water Foundation

July 2019

Building Critical Connections with Dr. Abdullah Pratt

Dr. Abdullah Pratt, an Emergency Medicine physician at the University of Chicago Medical Center, first visited Sweet Water Foundation via friend and SWF team member, Taryn Randle. Dr. Pratt is a native of Chicago’s South Side, Emergency Medicine Attending, and Assistant Professor of Emergency Medicine at the University of Chicago. He is committed to serving his community not only through his work at UChicago’s Trauma Center, but also by sharing his knowledge with both community members and his professional peers. Read on to learn about the critical connections developing at The Commons.

Educators for Excellence, Chicago    June 2019

Educators for Excellence, Chicago

June 2019

Increasing Diversity in the Teacher Workforce

Whether it's student discipline disparities or opportunity gaps, race -- even when you don’t think it should -- plays a role.

And it's just as true for teaching as it is for student learning. The numbers show that ALL students, no matter their race, benefit when they have a diverse set of teachers at the front of their classrooms.

Today more than half of all public school students are students of color, yet 40% of schools do not have a single teacher of color on staff.

Forty percent. Let that soak in for a minute, then let’s talk about why this is the case.

Chicago Coalition for the Homeless    June 2019

Chicago Coalition for the Homeless

June 2019

CCH awards college scholarships

Five high school seniors have won $10,000 college scholarships awarded by the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless (CCH) on Thursday, June 27.

CCH offers a renewable scholarship of $2,500 a year to students who succeeded in school while coping with homelessness.

The Chicago Public Education Fund    June 2019

The Chicago Public Education Fund

June 2019

“Kids are first in everything we do”: How a Back of the Yards principal creates a community of support

For more than a decade, Principal Paul Schissler has led Lara Academy with one guiding principle: “Kids are first in everything we do.”

“You have to care about what kids need,” Schissler explained. “It’s a tough neighborhood. There is violence, poverty, and a lack of social services. You can’t work here if you don’t understand this.

Bottom Line, Chicago    March 2019

Bottom Line, Chicago

March 2019

The College Admissions Scandal: A Symptom of the Broken System

As the leader of an organization that works alongside students as they get into and graduate from college, having the top news stories focus on the college admission process is exciting. The story circulating, unfortunately, exposes the unspoken and illegal practices that help a few very privileged students gain acceptance to college, especially the most selective and competitive ones.

While the media is right to focus on this scandal, a more significant and pervasive issue requires equal if not more attention. Right now, hundreds of thousands of students from low-income backgrounds are navigating their own postsecondary journeys, facing hardships perpetuated by an antiquated education system which is not designed to give ALL of them the tools they need to overcome the barriers they’ll face. 

Contact Us

Please direct all correspondence and communication to: 

The Osa Foundation
351 W. Hubbard St.
Suite 600
Chicago, IL 60654

Robin Lavin

Amy Sauer
Strategic Advisor