2023 Grant Application

United Way’s highly competitive process Community Grant process is designed to award funds to programs demonstrating community need, articulating program efficacy, delivering measurable outcomes and effective services. Upon recommendation of the volunteer-led Community Investment Committee, United Way’s Board of Directors ultimately approves Community Grants to local health and human service programs administered by nonprofit agencies. No single volunteer or staff person at United Way makes these investment decisions. 


Read though the Guidelines on the next tab and review the Shared Outcomes page. 

All NEW submitters are required to have or create an account to complete and submit your report.  Keep your user name and password handy so that you can "save a draft" and return to complete your submission. This user name and password will continue to be used for future grant cycles. 

  • LOGIN HERE (If you already have a user name and password. Staff can assist with user names if needed)
  • CREATE AN ACCOUNT (New users only - we recommend using your email as your user name - then an email is sent to you to set your password an email will be sent to you)
  • RESET YOUR PASSWORD (if your email has been used previously, you can reset your password - note that your user name will appear as the greeting)
  • LOGOUT (Be sure to log out once you have saved your draft or submitted your report)

Due March 2nd, 2023 at Noon


Based upon the charitable structure of the United Way of Freeborn County, grants are limited to 501c3 non-profit organizations, or other charitable organizations able to receive a tax-deductible contribution, such as schools, faith-based organizations, and other public entities. 

Sponsoring Agencies of programs awarded funding will need to comply with Partner Agency Agreement terms. The completed Partner Agency Agreement form is due back within one month of the grant award notification. 

2023 GRANT Highlights

  • Grant proposals describe programmatic costs for one year.
  • Funds may be used for past program expenses, starting 1/1/23 with documentation showing programming costs.
  • Applications are for programs with specified outcomes, not for the agency/organization/nonprofit
  • The maximum any program may apply for is $10,000
  • One application per agency may be submitted
  • Priority consideration is given to program applicants requesting reimbursement.
  • Grant awards are for the 2023 Calendar Year and must be spent by 12/31/23.
  • Programs applying for program reimbursement costs are prioritized.
  • Reimbursement awards are completed quarterly with Q1 & Q2 combined. After submission of the reimbursement invoice request, review panels have approximately 6-8 weeks to review and approve the allocation.

2023 Grant Timeline & Awards Info

  • Applications due on March 2nd at Noon
  • Panel Presentations will occur the week of March 6th or week of March 23rd. Presentations will be in the evening.
  • Award Letters & 2023 Partner Agency Gathering: April/May
  • Grant Funds Allocated: allocation timelines are noted in your grant award letter. For reimbursement grants, the following timeline is established. This timeline is subject to change but will be noted in award letters.
    • Q1 & Q2 Reimbursements will be due on July 14th, 2023
      • Review panels have approximately 6-8 weeks to review and approve the allocation.
    • Q3 Reimbursement will be due on October 13th
    • Q4 Reimbursement will be due on January 12th

Panel Presentations

In previous years, site visits were a grant requirement. In keeping with equitable best practices, UWFC will now require applicants to present to the Community Investment Committee. Panel presentations are designed to showcase your program and community impact. It is also an opportunity to answer questions from the Community Investment Committee to clarify or expand answers on the application.
Applicants will be notified of presentation details the week following the application deadline. Presentations will occur the weeks of March 6th and March 20th. No panel presentations will be scheduled the week of March 13th. All presentations will be between 4:00 pm to 8:00 p.m. Applicants should plan for a 10-20 minute presentation, including Q&A. The presentation may occur in person or via zoom. Due to challenges of audio, there will be no hybrid option.
Executive Directors are encouraged to ask a board member or program staff be at the presentation. If more than two people plan to attend, please notify UWFC staff.

Grant Guidance Support

UWFC will host office hours on the following dates:

  • February 9th at 10:00 am
  • February 13th at 1:00 pm
  • February 16th at 2:30
  • March 1st at 11:00 am

All office hours will start with a presentation to review the grant application with time for a Q&A session to ask clarifying questions about grant guidelines. Applicants should have logged into the grant portal, reviewed the grant application and fully reviewed the Grant Guidelines, Shared Outcomes and supporting documents. These can be reviewed at http://unitedwayfc.org/communityimpactgrant Please bookmark this page, as many questions can be answered by reviewing the materials provided here.

Technical Grant Support

All applicants are highly encouraged to log in and review the grant materials within the first two weeks of the grant cycle.

  • It is best practice to answer your questions in a word document to ensure work is not lost due to technical issues.
  • Technical assistance will be provided as needed through February 16th. There will be no assistance available February 20th through 27th.
  • Limited technical assistance will be available February 28th to March 2nd.

If technical difficulties are unable to be resolved, please notify UWFC staff and an alternate method of submitting the grant will be provided.

Click here for a printable version of this document. 

Investment Policy:
United Way's Community Investment Policy has historically been that United Way must not be the primary or only source of funds a program receives. United Way encourages applicants to be as self-sustaining as possible, consistent with sound principals of nonprofit fiscal management. This is done to align with United Way's mission to have the greatest impact and to be able to fund multiple programs in the areas of health, Education and Income.

United Way will not fund more than 50% of a program's budget costs. The overall organizational budget must not be considered when calculating the program percentages. 

Program applications that meet both of the following conditions, please review this additional guidance.

·        Grant recipient in 2022, using funds for expenditures in 2023

·        Applying for the same program in 2023

If your program meets the above, please consider the following:          

·        UWFC must not be the primary or only source of funds a program receives. To determine this, evidence must be shown on the financial documents that the agency is providing funding that match or are in excess of the requested amount.

·        Any funds granted by the United Way in 2022 for expenditures in 2022 must be included in the United Way's portion of the 50% program budget cost calculations.  

Example: XYZ Program has applied for funding in 2021 and 2022. They received $500 and will be applying that for expenditures in 2022. In 2022, XYZ Program is requesting another $500 for the same program. To sufficiently meet the financial requirements, XYZ Program must provide evidence of $1,000 designated for the program. In Kind donations and UWFC funding cannot be counted towards this designated line item.





The bulk of this application is in narrative form, to allow agencies to “tell their story”. Review the guidelines carefully, as these questions will help your organization. Questions relate directly to the Evaluation Rubric in four areas:  Highest Localized Impact, Equity/Ease of Access, Collaboration & Best Practices and Financial Stability & Shared Outcomes. This chart is not intended to be all inclusive, and utilizes a general ranking of High, Medium and Low. 

Each guideline section includes questions to consider as each section is answered.


Equity:  United Way values programs that promotes inclusion, diversity and equity and that advance equitable opportunities for all. How do you include voices of your client population in decision making? How is your client population represented among organizational staff and board leadership? How is your organization addressing barriers that disproportionally impact a particular demographic? What types of equity and diversity training does organizational staff and leadership participate in? How do you communicate to the public your services and what types of barriers are there for consumers to access your services? How are those barriers addressed? Please be sure you are addressing different areas of equity from a client perspective and an organizational perspective. Include specific trainings, recruitment strategies and mission and values statements that reflect your work in this area. 


Highest Localized Impact: United Way values programs that serve all segments of the population. However, we must target dollars to those service recipients who are most in need. United Way defines most in need as children, youth, families and individuals living at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines, and/or those who experience hardship due to the systemic barriers of racism. Additionally, high ranking grant proposals will be data driven using local metrics, describing the evidence base and need for the program within Freeborn County. Needs within Freeborn County will be clearly articulated and focused on this geographic region, and not statewide. Additionally, when appropriate,  programs with the highest localized impact will have strategies to break the cycle of poverty. IE. Strategies developed to help a client improve financial stability so food supports are not needed.

This component does overlap with Shared Outcomes. This grant narrative section should focus on articulating the target population and barriers faced, using data relevant to Freeborn County. Data may be compared to regional and state data points for reference. 


Shared Outcomes: Compelling grant proposals will describe programs consistently utilizing Shared Outcomes. Programs are invited to write their own Outcomes if there is not an appropriate indicator that reflect your program’s work. Shared Outcomes can be found by visiting UWFC’s  Shared Outcomes page.  How does the agency plan to collect and report performance measures? What outcome measures will be collected? How do the proposed outcome measures relate to the evidence base for the intended target? When will data be used to improve programming?
This component does overlap with Highest Localized Impact. This grant narrative section should focus on articulating the Outcomes and Indicators.


Collaborative: Efficient programs utilize resources within and beyond our community. How is the agency learning from and sharing information with other organizations? How is the agency working within larger community collaborative efforts? How is the agency working with other organizations to reduce service gaps and prevent duplication of services? Are referrals a journey taken together with the client? What are best practices in your scope of work, and how does your organization meet those best practices? Who are the experts in your scope of work?


Agency/Organization/Nonprofit: For the purposes of this United Way, these three terms are used interchangeably to define a collective group that is tax exempt and eligible for funding that has a defined community benefit in the areas of Health, Education and Financial Stability in Freeborn County.

Program: Organized activities and actions that utilize resources to produced desired outcomes. Programs exist within an organization. United Way funds programs, and not agencies as a whole.


Outcomes: These are benefits or changes for individuals or populations during or after participating in program activities. They are influenced by a program’s outputs. Outcomes may relate to knowledge, attitudes, values, skills, behavior, condition or other attributes. They are what participants know, think or can do; or how they behave; or what their condition is, that is different following the program.  This could include Targets or Objectives for a program's level of achievement. 

[What are your GOALS for the program?]

Indicators: The specific items of data that are tracked to measure how well a program is achieving an outcome. This does not have a specific measurement at the start of the program, it is defining what will be measured.

[What are you going to MEASURE to show the accomplishments of your goals/outcomes?]  


Example: For example, in a youth development program that creates internship opportunities for high school youth, an outcome might be that participants develop expanded views of their career options. An indicator of how well the program is succeeding on this outcome could be the number and percent of participants who list more careers of interest to them at the end of the program than they did at the beginning of the program.  

Click here for a printable version of this document