Public Welfare Foundation awards grants to nonprofits that honor the Foundation’s core values of racial equity, economic well-being, and fundamental fairness for all. The Foundation looks for strategic points where its funds can make a significant difference and improve lives through policy and system reform that results in transformative change.
The Foundation funds organizations that currently hold a 501(c)(3) status with the Internal Revenue Service working in the United States. Organizations that do not have this status can apply with a fiscal sponsor. The Foundation does not fund individuals, scholarships, direct services, or international projects.
Grant Types: How We Fund the Work
General Support Grants
General support grants are for day-to-day operating costs or to further the work of your organization. These grants are not earmarked for a particular program or project.
Program or Project Support Grants
Program or project support grants support a specific program or activity of the organization. These are restricted grants and must be used for that program or project.
Special Opportunities Grants
The Special Opportunities Program supports projects reflecting the Foundation’s mission and underlying values. These are one-time only grants that are especially timely and compelling. At times, this kind of grant serves as a laboratory for new ideas.
Public Welfare Foundation awards grants throughout the year. Please see our database below to see what we have funded. Filter grants by fiscal year and program area.
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- Closing Youth Prisons
- Community Reinvestment
- Criminal Justice
- Jackson, Mississippi
- Legacy Initiatives
- Local: District of Columbia
- Milwaukee, Wisconsin
- Narrative Change
- President's Discretionary Fund
- Race, Redemption, and Restoration
- Racial Disparities
- Raising the Age
- Restorative Justice
- Sentencing Reform
- Special Initiative: Civil Legal Aid
- Special Opportunities
- Workers’ Rights
- Youth Justice
- Bronx, NY // 2021
Community Connections for YouthSupport for effective community-driven alternatives to incarceration for youth.Awarded$400,000Term24 monthsProgramJustice Reform
- Seattle, WA // 2021
ORS ImpactSupport for a programmatic evaluation and learning framework.Awarded$400,000Term3 monthsProgramSpecial Opportunities
- Milwaukee, WI // 2021
Greater Milwaukee FoundationSupport to create the Milwaukee DYFS Youth Justice Partnership Fund.Awarded$200,000Term12 monthsProgramJustice Reform
- New York, NY // 2021
Columbia UniversitySupport for the Justice Lab to provide technical assistance to systems stakeholders for youth justice and young adult justice reform efforts in Colorado and Milwaukee.Awarded$150,000Term12 monthsProgramJustice Reform
- New Market, TN // 2021
Highlander Research and Education CenterSupport to Mississippi Prison Reform Coalition (MPRC) to reform Mississippi’s punitive sentencing laws and prison system.Awarded$100,000Term12 monthsProgramJustice Reform
- Milwaukee, WI // 2021
Hmong American Womens AssociationSupport for LiberateMKE, a campaign calling for divestment from police and reinvestment into communities.Awarded$250,000Term24 monthsProgramJustice Reform
- Calabasas, CA // 2021
Social & Environmental EntrepreneursSupport for the Systemic Liberation Project to conduct an evaluation of the Colorado Transforming Justice Initiative.Awarded$150,000Term12 monthsProgramJustice Reform
- Lansing, MI // 2021
Safe & Just MichiganSupport to Nation Outside, a statewide grassroots organization led by formerly incarcerated people.Awarded$100,000Term24 monthsProgramJustice Reform
- Detroit, MI // 2021
Mothering JusticeSupport for Michigan Liberation Education Fund to increase the leadership of formerly incarcerated people in Michigan.Awarded$100,000Term24 monthsProgramJustice Reform
- Washington, DC // 2021
National Public RadioSupport for criminal and youth justice media coverage in three Gulf State Newsrooms: Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama.Awarded$100,000Term12 monthsProgramSpecial Opportunities