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We make grants to a wide range of organizations that improve the overall quality of life in Indianapolis and expand and enhance the city’s economic, cultural and recreational opportunities. We support programs that contribute to strong neighborhoods and encourage the creation, improvement and expansion of amenities that attract and retain individuals, families and businesses. We have a special interest in helping organizations that provide needed services to residents negatively affected by poverty and other challenges and that help advance the prosperity of residents from communities of color who are disproportionately impacted by such challenges.

In addition to our regular grantmaking, since March 2020, the Endowment has made special grants to support organizations that are addressing COVID-19 pandemic-related needs in their communities.LEARN MORE

In August 2020 the Endowment made a $100 million grant to National Urban League for the Indianapolis African American Quality of Life Initiative. The initiative is a collaborative effort between National Urban League, the Indianapolis Urban League and the African American Coalition of Indianapolis to advance the prosperity of all of Indianapolis’ African American community. Learn More

Areas of Grantmaking

Strong neighborhoods help ensure that Indianapolis is a safe, livable community for all of its residents. Some grantees in this area are the Indianapolis Neighborhood Housing PartnershipLocal Initiatives Support Corporation IndianapolisIndianapolis Neighborhood Resource Center (INRC) and community centers such as Edna Martin Christian Center and Shepherd Community Center.

Intellectual capital and community economic development are essential to Indianapolis’ efforts to be a place where people want to live, work and contribute to their community. Some grantees that promote intellectual capital and economic development, in addition to those funded through our education division, are the Central Indiana Corporate Partnership (CICP) Foundation, 16 Tech, Indianapolis Urban League, Indianapolis Public Library Foundation, Greater Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce Foundation and Mid-States Minority Supplier Development Council.

Effective and sustainable human service organizations are critical to helping Indianapolis be a caring community, where all residents are supported in overcoming challenges, such as food insecurity, homelessness, unemployment and underemployment, domestic violence and various disabilities. Some grantees in this area are United Way of Central IndianaGleanersSecond Helpings, Easterseals Crossroads, Indianapolis Urban League, the Coalition for Homelessness Intervention and Prevention, Wheeler Mission, as well as community centers, such as John Boner Neighborhood Centers and La Plaza.

Enhancing Opportunity In Indianapolis is a $93.6 million grant initiative with the aim of helping a significant number of people in Marion County living in or near poverty make progress toward lasting economic self-sufficiency. The Endowment made 28 grants to fund highly collaborative projects in Indianapolis. The initiative was designed to encourage new ideas and collaborations, as well as approaches to expand the impact of existing promising efforts. As part of this initiative, the Endowment encouraged applicants to propose approaches to help create more good and promising jobs and help more residents attain those jobs. In addition, the Endowment expressed a special interest in proposals that would help increase economic opportunity for Black and Latino residents, who are disproportionately affected by poverty, and enhance the prosperity of individuals facing added challenges, including but not limited to individuals with disabilities, youth aging out of foster care, individuals who are homeless and immigrants facing language and other barriers. Learn more 

Arts and culture organizations strengthen Indianapolis by fostering a creative and energized community and a quality of life that is appealing to all individuals and families. Some of the many organizations we support in this area are the Indianapolis Zoo, the Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art, Indiana Black Expo, The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis, The International Center, the Madam Walker Legacy Center, the Arts Council of Indianapolis, Asante Children’s Theatre, Steward Speakers Series, Indiana White River Park Development Commission and Indianapolis Cultural Trail.