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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- Civil Legal Aid
- Closing Youth Prisons
- Community Reinvestment
- Criminal Justice
- Legacy Initiatives
- Local: District of Columbia
- Narrative Change
- Place-Based Initiatives
- 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
- New York, NY // 2013
Council of State Governments Justice Center$180,000 in general support of the Council of State Governments' Justice Center and $270,000 to the Justice Center to develop expertise in the area of pretrial justice and assist in implementation of pretrial reform projects.Awarded$450,000Term24 monthsProgramCriminal Justice
- Denver, CO // 2013
Colorado Criminal Defense InstituteSupport for advocacy to reduce over-incarceration in Colorado through pretrial detention reform.Awarded$100,000Term12 monthsProgramCriminal Justice
- Lansing, MI // 2013
Citizens Alliance on Prisons & Public SpendingGeneral support.Awarded$100,000Term12 monthsProgramCriminal Justice
- New York, NY // 2013
Center on Media, Crime and Justice$100,000 in general support; $75,000 for support for ongoing capacity-building of journalists to cover pretrial reform; $25,000 for support to educate journalists on the ACA's potential for increasing access health services for pretrial detainees.Awarded$200,000Term24 monthsProgramCriminal Justice
- Washington, DC // 2013
American Bar Association Fund for Justice and EducationSupport for the organization's Criminal Justice Section's Racial Justice Improvement Project, which seeks to reduce criminal justice racial disparities in target sites using data analysis and stakeholder consensus.Awarded$100,000Term24 monthsProgramCriminal Justice