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Women for Women Grant Guidelines

Women for Women Letter of Intent Process

The mission of Women for Women (WFW) is to improve the lives of women and girls in Western North Carolina through women’s collective giving. Our vision is that Women for Women inspires hope and possibility, empowers women to take action and strengthens Western North Carolina. WFW works to create opportunities for women and girls of Western North Carolina through grantmaking, advocacy and advancing women’s philanthropy. Since January 2005, WFW has invested more than $2 million dollars in high impact grants in WNC.

Focus Areas:

The 2014 Women for Women Grant Program promotes economic security for financially-disadvantaged women and girls in Western North Carolina. Direct service or advocacy projects should clearly focus on one of the following priority areas:

  • Education and training for jobs (such as connecting and supporting women in obtaining living wage jobs)
  • Improved outcomes for girls (such as increased high school graduation rates for girls, teen financial literacy, or teen pregnancy prevention)
  • Childcare affordability (such as increasing affordability, access and quality)
  • Financial education, asset development and money management
  • Job creation (living wage jobs, equal wages for women and worker-owned businesses)

Programs must demonstrate impact on long-term economic security.

While Women for Women recognizes that many strategies are important to improving the lives of women and girls, its membership wishes to focus on the five priority areas listed above.

Please note the following related services that will not be prioritized for funding:

  • Transitional housing programs for women (leaving prison, aging out of foster care, leaving domestic violence or homeless shelters)
  • Adult literacy
  • Domestic violence and violence prevention
  • Legal representation and/or community education about resources for families (access to food stamps, unemployment benefits, housing, etc.)
  • Mental health and substance abuse services to assist women in stabilizing and gaining employment

Grant Objectives: 

Women for Women will invest in programs that:

  • Demonstrate sustainable and measurable social change for women and girls through services that promote economic security
  • Address causes or prevention of poverty rather than symptoms
  • Make a long-term difference and increase financial independence in the lives of women and girls
  • Advocate for social change for women and girls at various levels of society - communities, institutions, systems and policies
  • Demonstrate collaborative and/or cooperative partnerships with other organizations and groups that yield greater impact than either organization could achieve alone
  • Demonstrate commitment to organizational learning and capacity building


Women for Women will make grants between $15,000 to $100,000, which may be used over one or two years.


 Women for Women will accept proposals for:

  • new programs
  • program expansion
  • operating expenses for existing programs (1 or 2 year grants; $50,000 limit total)
  • direct service or advocacy

Every effort will be made to distribute these funds throughout the 18 counties of Western North Carolina region.


Tax-exempt organizations described in Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue code and governmental entities are eligible to apply for these grants.

Organizations must be located in or serving one or more of these WNC counties: Avery, Buncombe, Burke, Cherokee, Clay, Graham, Haywood, Henderson, Jackson, Macon, Madison, McDowell, Mitchell, Polk, Rutherford, Swain, Transylvania or Yancey.

Current or former WFW grantees must have a minimum, one-year period from the end of the organization’s last grant before it can again be considered for funding, even if a different project other than the one originally supported would be submitted.

Funding Restrictions:

Women for Women does not offer grants for:

  • capital support
  • individual scholarships
  • endowment
  • sectarian purposes
  • veterans affairs
  • deficit funding
  • private schools and clubs

Statewide or national programs will not be considered unless funding is sought for a portion of the program that directly benefits WNC, and local people are involved. Organizations may not submit more than one Women for Women grant application at a time.

Deadline to Apply and Dates to Note:

  • The staff of The Community Foundation is available to help you. Contact Tara Scholtz or call 828-367-9913 for assistance.
  • Letter of Intent due date is Friday, November 8, 2013 by 5 p.m.
  • Semi-finalists selected to complete a full application will be notified in mid-December.
  • Full applications from semi-finalists submitted on Friday, January 17, 2014 by 5 p.m.
  • Finalists chosen for site visits by mid-February.
  • Final funding decisions will be made in late April.
  • Grantees will receive two tickets to attend the Power of the Purse® luncheon, at which grants will be announced publicly.
  • Funding will be available starting June 2014.
  • Begin the online process.