Grant Cycle FAQ


Q: Are there deadlines for applying?  

A: Yes. Applications for open cycles are available the first week of January, due the end of January and awards are made in May.

Note: Nonprofit Excellence does not have its own grant cycle. Organizations have the opportunity to apply for organizational capacity building support in their application during each priority area grant cycle.

Q: Are nonprofits required to have a 501(c)(3) designation to apply?

A: Yes. All applicant organizations must be nonprofit, tax-exempt 501(c)(3) and further defined as public charities 509(a)(1), also known as 170(b)(1)(1A) groups.  Faith-based nonprofit organizations and most churches are eligible for funding. Additional eligibility and restriction information

Q: Do my organization’s programs and services need to be located in a county served by WBF to receive a grant?   

A: Foundation Grants are for organizations that have their main office located in a county included in the WBF service area, or who have a main office outside of the service area but whose initiatives serve the counties in the WBF service area.  The WBF Service area includes: In Indiana – Vanderburgh, Warrick, Posey, Gibson, Spender, Dubois, Perry, Pike, in Illinois – Saline, Gallatin, White, Wayne, Wabash and in Kentucky – Henderson. The majority of requested funds should support the covered counties even if the project serves a broader area.

Q: Can my organization submit multiple applications within the same priority area or across different priority areas?  

A: Yes. Unless otherwise directed by the Foundation, there are no restrictions on the number of applications an organization can submit within one priority area or across priority areas. In fact, preference may be given to organizations advancing multiple priority outcomes.

Q: Can I apply on behalf of a collaboration?

A: Yes. The Foundation encourages collaborative approaches to solving complex community issues. In order to support this strategy, an eligible nonprofit can apply for funding as a fiscal agent on behalf of a variety of entities. The Foundation may request documentation such as MOU’s or agreements that outline roles and responsibilities of participants.

Grant Process

Q: How do I apply for a grant?

A: Applications must be submitted online through a link provided on the Foundation’s website . We encourage organizations who are limited by technology or who are new to grant writing to reach out for additional support. Email [email protected] or Phone 812-437-8260.

Q: What steps are involved with the application process?

A: WBF uses a single stage application process. For each priority area cycle, applications can be submitted starting the first week of January of the active cycle year. Applications are generally due by 5pm on the due date during the last week of January. Actual due dates are publicized ahead of each open cycle. The Foundation will engage in a period of internal review with staff and board. Additional information, meetings and/or site visits may be requested during the review period. The Foundation Board of Directors will vote on grant awards at the May board meeting.

Q: How long is the grant cycle?

Grant cycles are roughly five months in length and grants are typically awarded for a two-year period. Each application we receive is evaluated on a competitive basis as we strive to fund initiatives with strong impact and measurable outcomes within our four strategic funding priorities.

Q: Will a site visit or meeting be required?

A: There is no formal requirement for meetings and/or site visits during the application cycle, though this might be requested.

Q: When will I find out if my application is approved for funding and how will I be contacted?

A: Applicants are notified of their award decision in May of their grant application year. Applicants awarded funding will receive a call from their Program Officer with notification of the award followed up by an email with more details. Applicants receiving a decline will receive an email notification followed up by a mailed letter.

Grant Application

Q: Will I be required to set up a profile or account?

A: The online application process requires applicants to set up an online profile. The login information can be used for future grant cycles unless the applicant’s email changes. The system offers a password recovery option if needed.

Q: Who should be identified as the point person for the grant?

A: When setting up the account username and password for the application, please be sure to select a grant point person who is knowledgeable about the project and be sure to use an email address that is accessible to more than one person at the organization. Please also be sure to notify WBF if contact information changes. If you are a contracted grant writer, please use a different email address for multiple organizations. Within each application, you will be asked to provide a primary and secondary grant contact as well as a contact for the person overseeing evaluation and grant reporting.

Q: Do I have to complete the application in one sitting?

A: No. The grants management system saves your work automatically. You can exit as needed and return to your work later. If you prefer to work offline, you can copy information and paste into the appropriate field in the application when you are ready.

Q: How can I ask questions during the application cycle?

A: The application program is interactive. You can ask a question while you are working in your application. You can also email [email protected]

Q: Will I be required to upload any documents?

A: Yes. You will be required to upload a board roster and a non-discrimination statement.

Grant Funding

Q: Will I receive the full amount requested in my application?

A: Award amounts will vary. Grants are awarded on a competitive basis and, if approved, the grant amount may be different than your original request.

Q: Will there be any conditions or stipulations to my award?

A: The grant may contain certain conditions. For example, grants can include a match portion to further your organization’s fundraising ability.  If your grant contains a match requirement, this means that WBF will release a specified dollar amount upon the successful raising of a matching dollar amount. For example, a $30,000 grant may contain a $20,000 direct payment and a $10,000 dollar for dollar match award. WBF will release the $10,000 match portion as the grantee successfully raises this same amount.

Q: What is an appropriate dollar amount to request?  

A: The amount requested from the Foundation should be proportionate to your organizational budget, project or program budget and expected income from other sources.  Funding is ultimately contingent upon the initiative’s alignment with the Foundation’s priorities and funding availability from the Foundation’s annual budget.

Q: Do I need to include a dollar amount for evaluation in my request?

A: Measurement of grant funded activities and outcomes is a requirement. Organizations are encouraged to include funding for needs related to evaluation, e.g., survey materials, third-party consultant. The Foundation also offers each grantee some limited technical assistance with a third-part evaluation firm for high level guidance and advice. This TA is optional.

Q: How do I apply for capacity building for my organization, e.g., develop my board of directors, grow my leadership skills, create a strategic plan, improve human resources?

A: Organizations can apply for capacity building support as part of their Early Learning, Healthy Eating & Active Living and Christ-Centered Living grant application. Applying for this type of support is completely optional.

Grant Implementation

Q: What is required to receive my grant award payments?

A: All grant applications that are approved for funding will require a signed Grant Agreement as well as ACH bank deposit information for electronic fund transfers.

Q: How often will my organization receive grant payments?

A: Unless other arrangements are made, funds will be electronically deposited to the designated bank account on a quarterly basis over the grant period. Match dollars are released upon emailed submission of donors, dollar amounts, and dates received.

For additional questions, please call 812-423-8260 or email [email protected].