Introduce Yourself

Our framework for grantmaking alignment

Our grantmaking process is rooted in trust-based philanthropy, which means we take a special interest in learning, listening, and supporting those closest to the work. To be mindful of a nonprofits’ time and expertise, we are intentional in how we engage with them every step of the way. To save nonprofits time spent on letters of inquiry and requests for proposals, we do not have an open application process. Instead, we learn about nonprofits through ongoing research, community outreach, and from the introductions submitted through this page.

At the heart of our grantmaking is the desire to help children grow strong from the roots up. So, we support nonprofits who are helping children and their families thrive. In addition to mission alignment, we consider other factors like nonprofits that respond creatively to community needs, involve community in decision-making, and are valued by the community. We also consider special qualities like nonprofits whose staff have lived experience. When opportunities arise to expand our work, these are some of the things we look for.

For children to have a strong start in life, they must be healthy, safe, loved and learning. Therefore, we invest in four program areas: health, safety & justice, basic needs, and early learning. Across these program areas, we support direct services, as well as advocacy. When possible, we prioritize prevention and early-intervention strategies. Learn more about our program areas.

To stay focused on our mission, we do not fund the following:

  • National organizations without a Wisconsin presence.
  • Wisconsin organizations serving only one county (outside of Dane County).
  • Fundraising for other organizations.
  • Agriculture, animal welfare, arts and culture, community and economic development, the environment, fraternal organizations, sports and recreation, or youth development.
  • Organizations without a current nonprofit status, individuals, lobbyists, political campaigns, or religious purposes.

Tell us a bit about your organization

We welcome the opportunity to learn about nonprofits who provide in-depth programming that changes lives by helping children and families reach their full potential. If your organization aligns with a program area and funding approach, we encourage you to introduce your nonprofit. If your programs align with our priorities, we will reach out to learn more, or keep you in mind for future funding opportunities. Given our small staff size and lean approach, we cannot accept or respond to unsolicited proposals. Instead, we value the opportunity to hear more about your work through the form below.

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