Mar 18, 2020

2020 Nursing Innovations Fund Request for Proposal



 The Future of Nursing: Campaign for Action, a joint initiative of AARP Foundation, AARP, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF), will provide up to $25,000 each to select Action Coalitions working on an ongoing or new project that addresses nursing’s role in building a Culture of Health and health equity by addressing policies around one of the social determinants of health priority areas:

  • Access to care
  • Housing
  • Social isolation
  • Employment, or
  • Educational attainment

The goals of this competitive, one-year award are to:

  • Inform and influence policy;
  • Create replicable strategies that place nurses in positions as essential partners in providing care and promoting a Culture of Health, well-being, and health equity; and
  • Visibly and strategically involve a diversity of stakeholders.

A 1:1 match is required for each dollar awarded and applicants must prove that they have acquired matching funds. In-kind donations are welcome and valued, but will not count as matching funds.

The RWJF Culture of Health Framework emphasizes the importance of cross-sector collaboration and building effective relationships. Working together with community partners, Action Coalitions will be able to influence policy solutions and have greater impact. To help achieve the goal of broadening your reach, you might consider the following for your project:

  • Collaborate with partners that have similar goals (e.g., local health departments, housing authorities, schools, businesses);
  • Join forces with other effective campaigns;
  • Look for alternative funding sources through corporate giving, state or federal grants, or individuals; and/or
  • Work with non-nursing partners to promote mutually beneficial policies that will lead to greater improvements in health and well-being.

Action Coalitions can focus on policy solutions at any level, including public policies at the local, state, or federal levels, or policies in the private sector.

Information about the social determinants of health and health equity is in the resources section of the frequently asked questions document.


Action Coalitions committed to addressing nursing’s role in building a Culture of Health and health equity are encouraged to apply for the Nursing Innovations Fund award. Applicant organizations must:

  • Be a member of an Action Coalition or of an approved organization affiliated with the Action Coalition. Evidence of approved organizations should be in the form of a letter from the Action Coalition supporting their application to lead the project and describing the role of each partner organization in the project;
  • Secure 1:1 matching funds (a maximum of $25,000 to be awarded);
  • Advance and enhance nursing’s role in promoting a Culture of Health, well-being, and health equity by addressing access to care, housing, social isolation, employment, or educational attainment through policy solutions;
  • Show evidence of the proposed project’s replicability and sustainability;
  • Show evidence of stakeholders that represent diversity, for example, from different fields and of various backgrounds, experiences, regions, race, ethnicities, sexual identities, and other aspects of the community.

Preference will be given to applicants that are either public entities or nonprofit organizations that are tax-exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code.


Funds may be used for personnel, meetings, supplies, project-related travel, and contractors or consultants. Funds may not be used to subsidize individuals for the costs of their health care, to support clinical trials of unapproved drugs or devices, to construct or renovate facilities, for lobbying, for political activities, or as a substitute for funds currently being used to support similar activities. Chosen applicants will be required to report on the use of their Nursing Innovations Fund at the end of the funding period.


The Campaign strives to increase the diversity of the nursing student body, faculty, and workforce. This objective can be obtained by recruiting stakeholders and partners who represent diversity in many forms.

Consistent with RWJF and AARP values, this program embraces diversity and inclusion across multiple dimensions, including race, ethnicity, gender, age, sexual identity, and socioeconomic status. We strongly encourage applications that will help expand the perspectives and experiences we bring to our work. We believe that the more that such diversity is included in these efforts, the more successful we will be in building a Culture of Health and health equity, enabling all in our diverse society to lead healthy lives now, and for generations to come.


Complete the application and submit via email to, no later than 10 p.m. ET on June 30, 2020. In fairness to all applicants, the program will not accept late submissions. All funding decisions will be made by a review team consisting of Campaign for Action leadership, staff, and advisers.

Interested applicants are encouraged to participate in an optional informational web conference scheduled for April 8 at 2 p.m. ET.

For more information on the Nursing Innovations Fund and proposal requirements, please contact:

Center to Champion Nursing in America

AARP Public Policy Institute

601 E St. NW

Washington, DC 20049

Phone: (202) 434-3882




 The Center to Champion Nursing in America, which runs the Campaign for Action and is also an initiative of AARP Foundation, AARP and RWJF, will provide technical assistance and direction for those who receive awards. All applicants, regardless of whether they receive an award, will be offered technical assistance throughout the year.

Questions? Please email or call (202) 434-3882.


April 8, 2 p.m. ET Webinar for interested applicants
June 30, 10 p.m. ET Applicant submission deadline
July/August Finalists notified of funding recommendations
October 1 Projects initiated