SAIL Funding Opportunity

The Summer Adventures in Learning (SAIL) Partnership focuses on summer programs where students can explore new interests and skills and gain the support they need to prevent summer learning loss. Through this important partnership, funders commit to using a joint application process for nonprofit organizations seeking grant support to add or enhance consistent academic components to summer youth programs. Data shows that summer learning loss accounts for nearly two-thirds of the ninth grade achievement gap in reading. Research also shows that the effects of participation in a summer learning program can benefit the child for at least two years afterwards. Local experience in Birmingham has shown average gains of at least two months in reading and math during a five to six week program, making a significant positive difference for these children.

How to apply:

  • Access the Community Foundation of Greater Birmingham’s Online Grant System to create an account or to login to your current account.
  • Click Apply and select the Summer Adventures in Learning application.
  • An application should appear for you to complete and submit.

For more information please contact Suzy Harris-SAIL Program Manager at 

The Daniel Foundation joined with five other area funders to create SAIL, or Summer Adventures in Learning program in 2012.  The number of funding partners continues to grow allowing for a larger impact.

In SAIL, Birmingham-area students participate in a target group of learning-enriched summer youth programs and gain academic ground during the summer instead of losing it. National studies have shown that students typically return to school one to three months behind where they were at the end of the previous school year.  Participants in SAIL advanced more than a month on average. Some programs helped students jump three to four months ahead.  More than 1,000 students participated in the over 30 programs involved in SAIL, a collaborative effort involving summer program hosts, enrichment providers, educators and funding partners.

The funders also provide for the assessment that gauges each student’s learning level in reading and math when they enter the programs and when they exit. Over the years, the cumulative learning loss over the summer can make it hard for students to graduate from high school.  Low- income students are disproportionately affected.  SAIL programs work to counter that.

The Daniel Foundation is proud to be a partner in this collaborative effort that goes beyond the traditional approach of a single funder awarding a single grant to one program that is working to address a particular problem in isolation.  The coalition of funders and participants regularly meet to exchange insights on administrative and educational successes and how they were achieved, as well as discuss obstacles encountered and how they were overcome.