Developing Milestones and Reporting

Milestones are the goals your organization reports on annually during your award period. Milestones are not exhaustive lists of every goal a partner has, but should be concise and focus on the major strategic goals your organization will strive for during the requested grant period. Milestone development is led by the partner, but milestones should adhere to the following instructions:


​When proposing milestones:
  1. Proposed milestones should be 1 page in length per year of the grant term.

  2. For unrestricted or general operating grants, milestones should address the following strategic areas (for samples of each category click here):

    • Program Implementation and Impact

    • Expansion and Growth

    • Fundraising and Marketing/PR

    • Human Resources, Operations, and Systems

  3. For project-based grants, milestones need not adhere to the strategic areas listed in point 2 above. Rather, project-based grant milestones should be tailored to the stated goals of the project discussed throughout the proposal process.

  4. Milestones should be in SMART goal format. That is, each goal should be specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time-bound.

  5. Milestones should include both: (1) your organization’s corresponding baseline information and (2) goals for the grant request period. For example, in crafting milestones, a partner should indicate current delivery levels, as well as each particular year’s goal (E.g., We currently serve 2,000 families each year, and our goal is to serve 2,500 in Year 1 of the grant, 2,750 in Year 2, etc.). When it comes time to report on those goals each year, partners should include (1) baselines, (2) goals that were set, and (3) actuals.

  6. If revisions are required in the proposed milestones, staff will reach out with specific questions or comments. 


When providing updates/annual reports:
  1. Annual milestone reports are due by November 1st each year (starting in 2023, milestones will be due in an assigned quarter for each partner). Staff will typically follow up after submission to set up a check-in phone call for more context on how you're doing.

  2. Milestone reports can be up to 3 pages long, and should include (1) baselines from the start of grant term, (2) the goal that was proposed for the reporting aperiod, and (3) the actual outcome for the year. Please note that we encourage reports to stay at 3 pages or less. We understand this will limit the amount of narrative detail you can provide. We view the report simply as a starting point for the check-in conversation with staff and we can talk about more details during the call. Staff will reach out to partners to set up check-in calls as time permits.

Please note that potential for renewal funding will not be tied to absolute achievement of all milestones, nor will absolute achievement of all milestones guarantee renewal funding. Instead, we use milestones as guideposts to having meaningful check-in conversations with our partners along the way.