Grants

Investing in nonprofits that are advancing a new, transformative system of justice with the core values of racial equity, economic well-being, and fundamental fairness for all.

Grants Overview


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.

Grants Awarded

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.

  • Madison, WI // 2021

    Wisconsin Alliance for Women’s Health

    Support for Milwaukee Freedom Fund to end pretrial detention and reinvest in Milwaukee’s communities.
    Awarded
    $100,000
    Term
    24 months
    Program
    Justice Reform
  • Milwaukee, WI // 2021

    Marquette University

    Support for Neighborhood News Service to expand adult and youth justice reporting in Milwaukee.
    Awarded
    $75,000
    Term
    12 months
    Program
    Justice Reform
  • Milwaukee, WI // 2021

    Greater Milwaukee Foundation

    Support to create the Milwaukee DYFS Youth Justice Partnership Fund.
    Awarded
    $200,000
    Term
    12 months
    Program
    Justice Reform
  • New York, NY // 2021

    Columbia University

    Support 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
    $150,000
    Term
    12 months
    Program
    Justice Reform
  • Milwaukee, WI // 2021

    Hmong American Womens Association

    Support for LiberateMKE, a campaign calling for divestment from police and reinvestment into communities.
    Awarded
    $250,000
    Term
    24 months
    Program
    Justice Reform
  • Milwaukee, WI // 2020

    Milwaukee County Health and Human Services Department

    Support for a Zero Youth Corrections Project Manager at the Division of Youth and Family Services (DYFS) to dramatically reduce the number of incarcerated Milwaukee County youth.
    Awarded
    $300,000
    Term
    24 months
    Program
    Justice Reform
  • Madison, WI // 2020

    University of Wisconsin Foundation

    Support to the UW Justice Lab for a data landscape analysis on Milwaukee’s adult and youth justice systems and public safety efforts.
    Awarded
    $71,000
    Term
    12 months
    Program
    Special Opportunities
  • Milwaukee, WI // 2020

    Greater Milwaukee Foundation

    Support to the Blueprint for Peace Fund in its public health approach to violence prevention that prioritizes areas hardest hit by persistent violence and incarceration in Milwaukee.
    Awarded
    $200,000
    Term
    12 months
    Program
    Special Opportunities
  • Milwaukee, WI // 2020

    Wisconsin Voices Inc

    Support to the African-American Roundtable and expansion of the LiberateMKE campaign to mobilize residents around alternatives to incarceration and community reinvestment in Milwaukee.
    Awarded
    $100,000
    Term
    12 months
    Program
    Special Opportunities
  • Milwaukee, WI // 2020

    Greater Milwaukee Foundation

    Support for COVID-19 response efforts.
    Awarded
    $100,000
    Term
    12 months
    Program
    Special Opportunities