Grant Guidelines

Impact100 Louisville is a community of women transforming lives through collective giving. We award grants in amounts of at least $100,000, possibly more. The exact amount of funds available for award in any given year depends upon the number of women who join the organization and will be announced at the end of our membership drive.

By providing high impact grants to local nonprofit organizations, Impact100 Louisville is able to expose our membership and our community to valuable services provided by different organizations. Because Impact100 Louisville selects its grant recipients through a collaborative process among its members, its grant process might differ from those of other organizations. Impact100 Louisville believes its grant process benefits nonprofits including the non-grant recipients by increasing the visibility in the community for all finalists, not just the recipients, by exposing their important work to a large and diverse group of charitable minded women, as well as to our community overall.

Applicants Must Submit A Letter Of Intent To Apply

Letters of Intent are accepted in April.  Check back for more information.

Eligibility

An organization is eligible to apply for the Impact100 Louisville grant if it:

  • Is defined as a tax-exempt public charity under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.
  • Serves the residents of Jefferson County, Kentucky, or is a recognized local chapter of a state or national organization serving this region. 
  • Is registered with the Kentucky Secretary of State.
  • Demonstrates sustainability and community support, which is evidenced by public donations, volunteerism, and utilization of the organization’s facilities and/or programming. 
  • Does not discriminate based on religion, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or gender. 
  • Submits only one grant application per year to Impact100 Louisville for the $100,000 grant in one of the five focus areas: arts or culture; education; environment, recreation, or preservation; family; health and wellness.
  • Has not received an Impact100 Louisville grant in the past 3 years.
  • Has operated under its own 501(c)(3) status for at least 24 months from the application date.

Grant Proposals eligible for the Impact100 Louisville grant must:

  • Serve residents of, and expend at least 75% of funds in Jefferson County, Kentucky.
  • Be for the full grant amount. The project’s total budget may exceed the grant; but if so, the grant application must indicate how the remaining funds will be secured. 
  • Expend funds within 36 months of the award date.
  • The project must have a positive IMPACT on our community and be sustainable.

Grants must be applied in one of the following Focus Areas:

  • Arts & Culture: Initiatives that cultivate, develop, and enhance the cultural and/or artistic climate of Jefferson County, Kentucky.
  • Education: Initiatives that further the educational process or improve access to education for children and/or adults in Jefferson County, Kentucky.
  • Environmental, Preservation or Recreation: Initiatives that will restore, preserve, revitalize or enhance the facilities, surroundings and/or recreational opportunities of Jefferson County, Kentucky. This category includes housing, urban planning, and community spaces.
  • Family: Initiatives that strengthen and enhance the lives of children and families living in Jefferson County, Kentucky.
  • Health & Wellness: Initiatives that improve the mental and/or physical well-being of people living in Jefferson County, Kentucky.

Allowable Types of Grants

Grants funding will be considered for any of the following:

  • Capacity Building: Funding must enhance something already in existence and is typically a one-time expense. (Examples: technology upgrades, strategic planning, leadership development)
  • Program Support: Funding is given to expand or improve existing activities that support the organization's mission, in order, to broaden its reach and improve sustainability.
  • Innovation: Funding for a new idea, method, or improvement.

Impact100 Louisville will NOT provide grants for:

  • Individuals 
  • Endowment funding 
  • Partisan, legislative, or political activity.
  • Projects of individual churches, synagogues or other religious institutions unless a separate tax-exempt entity that is not under the umbrella of the church, synagogue or other religious institution exists for receiving Impact100 Louisville funds
  • Faith-based projects or programs which require participation in activities of a particular faith, denomination or religion in order to benefit from the project or program
  • Benefits of the project or program must be available to any person, regardless of religious beliefs or practices
  • Benefits of the project or program must not be dependent on any person being required to participate in any religious activity, ceremony or service
  • Capital improvements or renovations to property for the grant project if the organization does not own or have a lease of at least five years

Grant Evaluation Criteria


The members of Impact100 Louisville evaluate grant applications according to the following: 

Is the project transformational? Transformational projects solve a problem, satisfy a need or create an opportunity for strategic change. People involved in transformational projects look at the big picture to see a productive approach to change. This approach often means looking beyond the natural borders of the organization to find new ways to work with others to solve the problem, address needs or capitalize on opportunities. The process for conceptualizing the transformational project includes several steps:

  • Identify the wider need or the strategic issue to be addressed,
  • Identify and explain change created by the project,
  • Create project objectives,
  • Describe the impact the project will create, and
  • Identify ways to measure the success of the project.
  • Does the project have a high impact? High impact projects significantly influence our community and can be achieved in a variety of ways, such as:
  • Enabling an organization to affect a larger group of people,
  • Changing the way an organization addresses its mission resulting in a fundamental shift in how it provides services to its stakeholders,
  • Directly affecting a small group of people which results in significant change that will have wider implications for the community.

Is the project sustainable? Impact100 Louisville grant funds must be expended within 36 months of the award date. The applicant must demonstrate how the program will continue and be funded after that time.

Does the organization have the strength, capacity and capability to successfully administer a grant of this magnitude?

  • The project supports the organization's mission and strategic plan.
  • The organization’s Board of Directors and administrators provide effective operational and fiscal leadership.
  • The members of the Board of Directors reflect a range of capabilities commensurate with the needs of the organization.
  • The members of the Board of Directors support the work of the organization financially.
  • The organization is financially stable, conducting effective annual fundraising.
  • The staffing indicated for the program is realistic.

Grant Review Process

Grant Application: Grant applications will be sent to eligible applicants (based on the organization‘s Letter of Intent) from Impact100 Louisville.

Initial Document Review: Impact100 Louisville Finance Committees will conduct an initial review of all applications and contact applicants with questions or requests for information. If additional information is requested, it must be submitted by the due date given at the time of the request. 

Site Visit: Eligible applicants receive a site visit by a team of Impact100 Louisville Grant Review Committee members. Site visits provide an opportunity for Impact100 Grant Review Committee members to meet the people supporting the organization requesting funding. Use this time for your organization to shine and for you to be able to tell your story, your vision, and your dream in person. You will have the opportunity to explain what the application cannot always convey: the passion, the difference this grant would make, and the impact to the organization and the community. You should plan to have the following people attend the site visit: your board chair, your treasurer or someone who can answer financial questions, and perhaps one or two key employees. If possible, individuals the organization serves should be present as well. There should be no press at the meeting.The objective of the site visit is to complete a general due diligence review and to resolve the committee‘s remaining questions regarding the organization, its proposed project and/or budget. Site visits necessitate approximately two hours of dedicated time. Grant Review Chairs set the site visit at a mutually agreed upon time. An applicant may request a specific time for the visit if a particular time will best highlight the program request.

Grant Review Committee Final Review: After site visits are completed, Impact100 Grant Review Committees perform a final review of the grants assigned to their committee, vote on a finalist from their grant pool, and rank remaining applicants for further review. Finalists are presented to the Impact100 Board for final approval.

Finalists: Grant finalists are announced at a Grant Finalist Reveal.

Grant Summary: Applicants provide a project summary as part of the grant application. Summaries of projects selected as finalists will be sent to Impact100 members and posted on our website prior to the Annual Meeting.

Annual Meeting: Representatives from the grant finalists will be allowed five minutes to speak about their organization to the membership. The membership will vote on the grant recipients and will be announced at our Annual Meeting. 

Compliance:  Prior to the release of grant funds, each recipient must complete the Impact100 Louisville grant agreement. A grant liaison will be assigned to the award recipient (s). Award receipt (s) will need to submit six month progress reports on implementation and progress of the project to Impact100 Louisville until the project is completed. When the project is complete, or funds are fully expended, the recipient must submit a final report. A follow-up presentation is expected at the Impact100 Louisville annual meeting the following year.