AWS Foundation awards grants to help children and adults with enduring intellectual, developmental and physical disabilities live as independently as possible, be included in the community and function at their highest potential. “Mighty Money” mini grants, designed to provide a boost for not-for-profits, are also available.
We invite you to creatively audit the abilities of your organization for opportunities that, coupled with our grant making activities, expand your programs to serve the disability community. Then take a look at the eligibility and funding guidelines below to see how AWS Foundation might partner with your organization to make that vision a reality. For grant ideas, click here to review past grant recipients.
As you explore the possibilities and have questions about how your grant request aligns with our mission and guidelines, please email or call Joni Schmalzried, Chief Program Officer at 260.207.5656.
Letter of Intent
A Letter of Intent (LOI) is required for requests that fall into one of these categories:
- The organization is making its first formal grant request;
- The request is for capital support regardless of amount;
- The request is for $50,000 or more;
- The funding is a multi-year request.
- Program or Project Name
- Summary of the program/project, demonstrated need and expected outcomes
- Total cost of the program/project
- Amount requested from AWS Foundation
- How the request aligns with the Foundation’s mission and one of our priority initiatives
- Signed and dated by the Executive Director/CEO
Upon our receipt of your LOI, you will be contacted by Joni Schmalzried, Chief Program Officer, to discuss the request for eligibility and next steps.
AWS Foundation has four grant application deadlines per fiscal year. Below is the list of upcoming grant cycles. Applications open two weeks before their due date and must be received by 5 p.m. (EST) per the grant deadlines below and are accepted only via the Foundation’s website.
Please read through our Grant Guidelines and to determine your request meets our criteria.
We use an online grant application and management system called Foundant Technology. This system enables you to work on your application over time, cut and paste information into question fields, save your work and then return to it. You can also print the entire application (including attachments) with just one click. Reports will be submitted using this grant portal too. And, your organization’s applications and reports will be permanently stored for you to access at any time.
The logon process requires the following:
- A user name that is an email address
- Your contact information
- Your organization’s information including the EIN/Tax ID number
- Contact information for the organization’s Executive Director/CEO
To begin the application process click here.
Note: When referring to people with disabilities in your grant application, please use “People First” Language, respectfully putting the person before the disability, i.e., individuals with disabilities, individual with autism.
For an example on what “People First” Language is and how to write in this point of view, click here.
Gilmore Inclusive Arts Grant
Lynne Gilmore, the first Executive Director of the Foundation, is passionate about the inclusion of individuals with disabilities in all aspects of community life, especially the Arts. Upon her retirement in December 2018, the board dedicated a special grant in her name to honor her service to AWS Foundation and those we serve. The Gilmore Inclusive Arts Grant will support special projects devoted to including and engaging individuals with disabilities in the local arts communities of Northeast Indiana.
Amount: Up to $25,000
Frequency: Annually in Fall grantmaking cycle.
- Applications should be for a new program or project inclusive of those with disabilities (as defined on website under “focus“).
- Must be located in Northeast Indiana.
- An organization can only receive a Gilmore Grant as a primary applicant once.
- Funding is for programming and capital only.
- If the project is ongoing, applicants will be asked for a plan of sustainability.
- Priority will be given to submissions with the greatest impact, but projects affecting a small group are welcome to apply.
- Collaborations are welcomed and encouraged.
- Applicants need to be part of a 501(c)(3). If an individual would like to apply, they should find a 501(c)(3) partner.
- Projects must adhere to community guidelines around COIVD-19. Projects that answer the increased need for access to the arts during the pandemic for individuals with disabilities are encouraged.
How to Apply: The 2020 application opens on August 28 with the application due on September 25. Decisions are announced November 11. Submissions will be accepted through our online grant portal. Applicants will either need to create an account or log into an existing account. You may view questions before the application opens here.
Have a great idea, but not sure if it’s grant worthy?
Send us a quick description of your concept. We’ll let you know what we think and give you pointers on making it a grant-winning success.