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The Hawai‘i Community Foundation’s (HCF) Medical Research program makes grants annually to support basic and clinical research conducted in Hawai‘i. The overall goal of the program is to support a robust local medical research community that benefits the people of Hawai‘i. In 2024, funds will be awarded through one grantmaking round. Award recommendations are made by the Medical Research Advisory Committee (MRAC).

The Medical Research program is supported by several funders including: the George F. Straub Trust, the Victoria S. and Bradley L. Geist Foundation, and multiple funds at the Hawai‘i Community Foundation.

The following are the program’s areas of focus:

Grants in these areas are up to $60,000.

  • Clinical/basic research – Alzheimer’s disease, mental or physical diseases related to old age
  • Clinical/basic research – cancer, heart disease, or lung disease
  • Clinical/basic research – general
  • Clinical/basic research – immunology, genetics, or the medicinal uses of Hawaiian plants
  • Clinical/basic research – prevent blindness, with particular emphasis on macular degeneration
  • Clinical/basic research – type I diabetes (juvenile diabetes)

Grants in this area are up to $60,000.

  • Research infrastructure – The focus of this priority area is to support organizational and/or systems change in Hawai‘i to increase research capacity. Projects can support organizational change, support new or existing research collection and database systems, or assist with inter-organizational collaborative efforts. This priority area is not intended to support a specific research project or purchase equipment for a research project/department.

Grants in this area are up to $25,000.

The Leahi Fund for Pulmonary Research was established at HCF in 1994. The purpose of the Leahi Fund is “to support programs of research and education in, and the prevention of, pulmonary disease.” The Leahi Fund Advisory Committee will review all applications on a competitive basis and make recommendations for grants.


The intent of the Medical Research program is to support research proposals that are based on strong science and use proper protocols, and assist in advancing Hawai‘i’s medical research community. Priority is given to research projects that advance as many of the following elements as possible:

  • Articulate biomedical relevance and potential to impact health care delivery to benefit the people of Hawai‘i.
  • Are likely to lead to increased competitiveness for national funding by providing seed funding for gathering preliminary data.
  • Support junior faculty.
  • Support a new line of research in Hawai‘i.
  • Are a collaborative effort in Hawai‘i-based research.

Award Period

Researchers will have eighteen (18) months to complete their research project.

Deadline: Submit your application online by 4:00 p.m. HST on March 9, 2023. Applicants will be notified in June 2023.

For eligibility, application and document details, and contact information please see the attached flyer.



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