Grant Seekers

The West Bend Community Foundation, in partnership with the Greater Milwaukee Foundation, is a permanent charitable endowment created for the community, by the community. Grants from the Foundation are aimed at bettering the Greater West Bend Area and improving the lives of its citizens.

Grants from the West Bend Community Foundation address broad fields of interest, such as education and the environment.  Organizations interested in applying for funding should refer to the following guidelines, and direct specific questions to Dani Breen at 414-336-7072 or  

2023 grant cycle dates:

Feb. 14 -Nonprofit Informational Meeting- Zoom Registration updated later

Feb. 20- Application opens

Mar. 24- Application closes

May 16- Grant committee meeting

June 14- Board meeting

As always, you can find additional information about the grant cycle, priorities, and access the grant portal here.  Nonprofits will likely need to re-register even if they had previously applied before July 2022.


Grant Program Information

The West Bend Community Foundation provides grants for operating support, special projects or capital projects to nonprofit organizations representing a broad field of interest, including but not limited to:

– Arts and Culture

– Education (limited to scholarship organizations)

– Environment

– Family, Youth, and Elderly

– Health and Human Services

– Community Development

The Foundation does not ordinarily support:

– Sectarian religious purposes (unless specified by a donor-advised fund)

– Debt reduction

– Entities ordinarily supported by government

– Endowments

– Campaigns to elect candidates

– Third party reimbursements

– Individuals

Who may apply

Grants are made only to 501(c) (3) nonprofit organizations.  Geographically, funding for our discretionary grantmaking program is generally limited to projects that will significantly improve the lives of people living in the greater West Bend area and Washington County of Wisconsin.

Applying organizations will be required to provide evidence of an active, engaged board of directors, sound financial management and capability to carry out the proposed projects.

When to apply

Applicants will fill out a full proposal, through the Greater Milwaukee Foundation Grants Portal. Grants are usually submitted in Spring. Please check the website for up to date information about each year’s grant cycle. Information can be found here.

Application Process

All agencies applying for grants to the Foundation are required to have their data entered in the Grants Portal. If your organization profile is not already in the Grants Portal, you will need to create a new profile. Instructions for doing so are located on the Grants Portal page.

The West Bend Community Foundation Grants Committee will review online proposals and make recommendations to the full Board. If the application clearly does not meet the eligibility requirements or geographic area served, the Committee may decline the application without referral to the Board. The Board must approve all grants awards to be made by the Foundation.

All applicants receive written notification of the Board’s action.  Those selected for grants must agree to use the funds in accordance with the grant application and to abide by the Greater Milwaukee Foundation’s Terms and Conditions.

A financial account of expenditures and narrative of grant-supported activities will be required.  All funded grants must be in compliance with reporting requirements.


Decision Making Criteria

Among the criteria which will be used in judging applications are the following:

– Significance to the people of the Greater West Bend Area of the problems(s) addressed

– Capacity of the agency (governing body, staff, financing) to respond to the problem(s)

– Number of Greater West Bend Area residents expected to benefit

– Urgency of need for support

Multiyear grants will be considered, but generally for not more than three years.

Because the grantmaking process is competitive, preference will be given to requests for new or expanded projects/programs and to cases where the Foundation’s funds will make a significant impact.