Cisco welcomes applications for the Product Grant Program from community partners around the world who share our vision and offer an innovative approach to a critical social challenge.
Cisco donates networking technology to qualified nonprofit organizations to help them realize significant gains in productivity, scalability, and cost-efficiency. Together, we build public benefit programs that make innovative use of the Internet and communications technology and have a measurable impact.
The Cisco Product Grant Program focuses on the same social investment areas as our cash grants: critical human needs, access to education, and economic empowerment.
Cisco’s Product Grant Program accepts applications year-round from qualified charitable organizations to help them realize significant gains in productivity, scalability, and cost-efficiency. Before applying, nonprofits can determine their eligibility by reviewing the requirements below and grant giving policies.
We do not grant to schools, libraries, museums or hospitals.
Product grants to small organizations with one to several sites or requests under US$25,000 list price are fulfilled by our partner TechSoup.
All applications must be completed using our online application form. Cisco will not consider incomplete proposals or paper-based applications. Proposals in the following areas are not eligible for Product Grants:
Cisco requires applicants to certify that the chairperson or at least one officer of the organization's Board of Directors has reviewed the grant proposal and that the organization's board is aware of the application and supports its submission. Cisco also requires applicants to certify the accuracy of the proposal and to confirm that the organization complies with the policies stated on this web site.
All applicants are subject to reviews of their representations in their grant applications, their compliance with the policies stated above, and, if applicable, their adherence to the terms of the grant contract. If such a review reveals significant inaccuracies or violations of the policies stated above, or if an organization does not cooperate with the review, the organization may be required to return any granted assets and forfeit future funding eligibility.
Grantee organizations are required to sign a donation agreement electronically before donations can be delivered.
Cisco looks for grant proposals in which concrete measures of success can be used to assess performance. Organizations that receive a product grant will be required to report back on their project over the life of the grant by means of online surveys. Meaningful participation in this process is a requirement for continued funding eligibility.
In addition, organizations must adhere to Cisco policies related to non-discrimination, religious proselytizing, non-support of violence and terrorism, advocacy, lobbying, and other political activities and other areas listed in grant giving policies.
Following are the complete program guidelines.
We accept proposals for Customized Connectivity Grants on an ongoing, year-round basis. However, grants are reviewed on a quarterly cycle, and a proposal must be submitted within the first month of a quarter to be considered for that funding cycle. Applicants should plan at least three months for grant review plus additional time for product shipments.
Q1: August – October
Q2: November – January
Q3: February – April
Q4: May – July
The maximum request amount for first-time grant recipients is US$50,000 (list price) of equipment. Requests under US$25,000 are reviewed and fulfilled by our partner TechSoup. If you require equipment above the TechSoup limit or if the equipment you require is not offered, then you may apply for a Customized Connectivity Grant.
Ideal grantees take full advantage of Cisco's rich asset mix and end-to-end strategic thinking, using technology and ingenuity to bring about order-of-magnitude improvements. We look for how organizations will use technology to better address their mission or the mission of other nonprofits; expand their service to more clients or provide additional services at a similar costs; provide technology access to underserved populations or nonprofits who do.
Cisco Product Grant Program includes five free years of Cisco's Smart Net support service or similar. For questions related to accessing your Smart Net support, please review the FAQ below.
Cisco gives highest priority to proposals that clearly articulate the planned impact of their efforts, as well as the metrics by which the impact is measured.
Operational success: How operations would improve as a result of the grant. The data should be expressed as projected cost savings or increased revenue ($) to demonstrate efficiency and productivity gains in your operations.
Mission success: How your organization can increase its reach and impact as a result of the grant.
Technology success: Benefits derived from the equipment. Some indicators would include enhanced security, newfound scalability, or improved reliability of communications within your organization, with partners or other stakeholders. You can also describe related technological enhancements as a result of the grant.
In general, the larger the requested grant amount, the more measurements you will need to provide.
Product Grants cannot be given to organizations that have purchased Cisco equipment within the last six months, or who plan to purchase Cisco equipment within the next six months.
Product grant applications are accepted year round. Applications for less than US$25,000 are managed by our partner TechSoup. If you require equipment above the TechSoup limit or if the equipment you require is not offered, you may apply for a Customized Connectivity Grant.
Smaller nonprofits with a request for standard equipment, under US$25,000 list price, are managed by our partners:
If you require equipment above the TechSoup limit or equipment that is not offered via the Techsoup program, please proceed with the online Customized Connectivity Grant Application Process. For applications outside the US, we highly encourage you to contact us first.
The eligibility quiz will help you determine whether your organization and program are aligned with Cisco's mission, strategic approach, and objectives for grant support. Take the eligibility quiz.
Eligible organizations will be able to register and complete the online application form. This form requests detailed information about your organization, current and requested technology, network schematics support details, measuring impact, budget, and population served. Before completing the application, we recommend that you draft your answers using our sample application, and review eligibility, program guidelines, investment areas, and policies.
Customized Connectivity Grants are available to non-governmental organizations in many places worldwide. For various logistical reasons, we recommend you to contact us before you apply online so we can discuss the logistics details upfront.
Please note that these FAQs relate specifically to Cisco's Product Grant Program. For general Smart Net questions and inquiries, please visit Cisco's main Smart Net site.
Once your Smart Net contract is activated, you will receive an email from the Cisco Service Contract Center (CSCC) that includes your new Smart Net Contract Number and useful links to information and to open a case with Cisco's Technical Assistance Center (TAC).
You may open a case online with a valid Cisco Connection Online (CCO) ID and password. Go to the Service Support Center to open a case or to browse the knowledge base of questions and answers. For more information, visit Training. To register and create a Cisco Connection Online account, go to Cisco.com Registration.
Until all of your equipment has shipped and your Smart Net contract is activated, you are entitled to Warranty Coverage.
If you do not have your contract number and info, or if contract has not been activated, please contact us.
Yes. Our Order Services site allows end users to view and request an update to their Smart Net contracts via opening a case.
If any details of your contract or site are incorrect, contact Order Services to update them. This includes a change to the contact person in your organization that manages these types of service contracts as well as the Install Site address, serial numbers. If you receive an RMA from Cisco to replace hardware, remove the old serial number that you returned and replace it with the new one you received.
It is best to open a case with the Cisco Contract Center to update your inventory, site address and serial numbers. Should they have issues, they will contact the Cisco Product Grant team for clarification.
Cisco recommends that you purchase Cisco Smart Net coverage by contacting a Cisco Reseller of Smart Net service for a quote. To find a reseller in your area, use the partner locator.
When you received your donation from Cisco, you signed a receipt acknowledgment form and agreed to return equipment that is no longer used. To return your equipment, go to product recycling.
"Furthermore, organizations receiving product grants are not allowed to sell, exchange, or otherwise dispose of the donated property (or any portion thereof). Equipment that is no longer of use by the organization will be returned to Cisco."
Serial numbers that are not part of the Product Grant cannot be added to the contract. Only covered donated products are eligible. End-users are responsible for obtaining their own Cisco support agreements for any other Cisco equipment they own.