Grants for Nonprofits that Support Women and Children

Melissa Hoppe


Looking for a reference list to find grants for your nonprofit that supports women and/or children? We got you! But before you check out our extensive reference list below let’s take a moment to talk about grants. (Note that Brainchild Studios does not provide grant consulting or assistance services.)

Grants can be a great way for nonprofits to acquire extra working capital. They are awarded by governments (at every level - federal, state, and local) and by private and public foundations with criteria based on sector, location, type of programming, mission, or any number of other requirements. Fun fact: once you have obtained one grant, you are more likely to receive others, because receiving grants can be legitimizing to other grant-awarding organizations so they can build on each other! 

In order to maximize your organization’s chances of successfully acquiring grant funding, you must intently search for organization-appropropriate grants. One thing to keep in mind is the grant application process can be quite time-consuming and every grant-giving organization will have different requirements and rules that need to be followed. Also grant-writing is a real skill that takes time to develop. Don’t shy away from grants because of this, keep in it in mind when thinking about your time management and next steps. 

Grants are a great resource to fund large projects and to build your organization’s visibility and credibility. They take time and commitment to find and develop. Keep up the good search! We are hoping our list gives you a head start.

All of these grants are focused on helping organizations that promote equity, empowerment, and education for women and girls. A few grants (noted in their description), have particular focuses, such as violence prevention and arts promotion.



African Women's Development Fund: The African Women's Development Fund supports organizations that further the work of the African women's movement. Currently, AWDF funds women's organizations that focus on capacity–building through strengthening existing projects and national or regional civil society organizations engaged in women–specific projects. 

American Association Of University Women Educational Foundation (Washington, D.C.): The Foundation’s Community Action grants support the work of individuals, AAUW branches, and AAUW state organizations as well as local community-based nonprofits. Priority is given to innovative programs or non-degree research projects that promote education and equity for women and girls.

Canadian Women's Foundation: The Foundation focuses grantmaking on women and girls because they face distinct barriers that require distinct solutions and because gender equality improves economic and social conditions for everyone. Grants are awarded in the following areas: gender-based violence, economic security, girls empowerment, inclusive leadership.

Chambers Family Fund - Women, Arts, Education (Denver, CO): The Chambers Family Fund supports regional and national not–for–profit organizations that create systems change, improve the quality and circumstances of life and reflect our values and interests. We invest time, expertise and funding in organizations that help women become economically self–sufficient, enhance the early care and education of children, strengthen justice, equality and opportunity, and enrich the arts and culture.

Ewomennetwork Foundation (Dallas, TX): The Foundation exists to help small organizations make a big difference. In the spirit of “lifting as we climb,” the Foundation supports small nonprofits whose mission includes improving the emotional and financial well-being of women and children. Grantmaking aims to encourage an environment of caring, healing, and growth for women and children by helping them achieve optimum potential in all spheres of their lives. 

For Women (Brooklyn, NY): The mission of the Ms. Foundation for Women is to build women’s collective power in the U.S. to advance equity and justice for all. We achieve our mission by investing in and strengthening the capacity of women-led movements to advance meaningful social, cultural, and economic change in women’s lives.

Fund for Nonviolence (Santa Cruz, CA): The Fund for Nonviolence cultivates and supports community–based efforts to bring about social change that moves humanity towards a more just and compassionate coexistence. We have identified three priority areas which inform our funding: women in poverty, children (with an emphasis on girls), and challenging state–sponsored violence.

Global Fund for Women (San Francisco, CA): The Global Fund for Women supports women's groups that advance the human rights of women and girls. We strengthen women's right groups based outside the United States by providing small, flexible, and timely grants ranging from $500 to $20,000 for operating and program expenses.

Open Meadows Foundation: Open Meadows is a grant–making organization for projects that are designed and implemented by women and girls, which does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion or sexual orientation. It offers grants of up to $2,000 to projects that: Are designed and implemented by women and girls; Promote the empowerment and well being of women and girls.

Saxena Family Foundation (Austin, TX): The Saxena Family Foundation is a privately funded, 501(c) (3) registered non–profit charitable foundation headquartered in Austin, Texas. The Foundation awards grants and supports programs that have a particular focus on empowering women.

United Way: United Way improves lives by mobilizing the caring power of communities around the world to advance the common good.


Regional Grants

100 Women Charitable Foundation (San Francisco, CA): 100 Women Charitable Foundation is a recognized, tax–exempt organization that pools members' donations to award grants to local non–profits that support our community in one of three focus areas: Family (women and children); Education; or Health & Wellness. 

A Fund for Women (Madison, WI): A Fund for Women raises awareness among women that when they combine their financial resources, true societal change is possible. A Fund for Women provides grants to women and girls in our community that enhance education, employment, and self-esteem.

Allen P. and Josephine B. Green Foundation (Missouri, KS): The Allen P. and Josephine B. Green Foundation is a private foundation with about $11 million in assets. The mission of the Foundation is to improve the quality of life in Missouri. Areas of funding interest include Children, Culture, Education, Environment, Health, Historical Projects, Hospitals.

Ann Bancroft Foundation - Women & Girls (MN): The Anne Bancroft Foundation supports girls and women to realize their highest dreams and potential. The Foundation endeavors to live this mission by recognizing individual achievement and by promoting initiatives that inspire courage, risk–taking, integrity and individuality in girls and women.

Arizona Foundation for Women (AZ) : The mission of the Arizona Foundation for Women is to promote innovative solutions to fulfill the unmet needs of Arizona's Women and Children. The Foundation works to enhance the lives of women and children by investing in and promoting innovative solutions to such issues as domestic violence and child abuse prevention, economic self–sufficiency and self–esteem for young women.

Aurora Foundation For Women & Girls in Greater Hartford (CT): The mission of the Aurora Women and Girls Foundation is to be a catalyst for positive change in the lives of women and girls in Greater Hartford by: Engaging in strategic grantmaking that supports and empowers women and girls of all ages in Greater Hartford; convening the community around issues facing women and girls in our region to promote collaboration and effect solutions; and, providing opportunities to engage and educate women and girls about the power of philanthropy to effect social change

Boston Women’s Fund (Boston, MA): For the past twenty years, the Boston Women's Fund has been the only foundation in northeastern Massachusetts to exclusively support community–based organizations run by women and girls. We fund low–income women, women of color, lesbians, women with disabilities, older women, and girls who are working to create a society based on racial, social and economic justice.

Chicago Foundation for Women (Chicago, IL): One of the largest women's funds in the world, Chicago Foundation for Women believes that all women and girls should have the opportunity to achieve their potential and live in safe, just and healthy communities.

Iowa Women's Foundation (IA): The mission of the Iowa Women's Foundation is to improve the lives of Iowa women and girls through the power of philanthropy, advocacy and collaboration. The Foundation serves the full spectrum of girls and women in rural and urban communities throughout all regions of the state of Iowa.

Kentucky Foundation for Women (KY): The mission of the Kentucky Foundation for Women is to promote positive social change by supporting varied feminist expression in the arts. When women and girls advance, so does Kentucky.

Maine Women's Fund (ME): The MWF is strategically focused on the four priority areas: Eliminating violence against women and girls. Fostering self–esteem and self–determination for girls and women. Promoting economic security for every woman in Maine. Providing access to quality health information and health care services.

New York Women's Foundation (New York, NY): The New York Women's Foundation was established in 1987 as a voice for women and a force for change. We combine hands–on philanthropy with community–driven projects to change the lives of low–income women and girls.

Oshkosh Area Community Foundation Women's Fund (Oshkosh, WI): The mission of the Women's Fund of the Oshkosh Area Community Foundation is to make resources available for causes of interest to women; to foster among women a sense of empowerment and philanthropy; and to increase awareness throughout the community of the importance of women's issues.

Outerbanks Community Foundation (Southern Shores, NC): The Community Enrichment Grants Program is the Community Foundation’s largest and broadest funding opportunity. The grants are offered on a competitive basis for any kind of charitable project that benefits the Outer Banks, or any part thereof. Areas of interest include: arts & culture; animal welfare; children & youth; education; the environment; disaster relief & prevention; health; historic interpretation & preservation; and other human services.

The Women's Fund of Greater Birmingham (Birmingham, AL): Our grants support high-impact interventions proven to accelerate women’s economic opportunity and disrupt the cycle of generational poverty. We leverage community investments to support organizations that prioritize programs and public policy advocacy to remove barriers for women and their families through education, job training, child care support, housing, and more.

Valentine Foundation (Philadelphia, PA): The Valentine Foundation is a Philadelphia–area grantmaking organization that, for over 20 years, has been providing charitable funds to organizations and programs which result in the empowerment of women and girls.

Vermont Women Fund (VT): No other organization in the state of Vermont makes grants exclusively to support the needs of women and girls. Our grants are helping women and girls to move out of poverty, establish safe relationships, choose healthy behaviors, build communication skills, master non–traditional occupations, and strengthen their physical, emotional, intellectual and financial well–being.

Women's Foundation of Genesee Valley (Rochester, NY): The Women's Foundation funds projects that create systemic change and move women and girls toward economic self–sufficiency.

Women's Foundation of Greater Kansas City (Kansas City, MI): The Women's Foundation of Greater Kansas City raises, invests and grants funds to promote equity and opportunity for women and girls. Our grants have given local health centers the resources they need to provide better and more accessible services.

Women's Foundation of Minnesota (MN): GirlsBEST (Girls Building Economic Success Together) program: a five–year grantmaking and public awareness initiative focused on increasing the readiness of girls, ages 10–18, to achieve economic well–being.

Women's Foundation of Mississippi (MS): The Women’s Foundation of Mississippi is dedicated to improving the lives of women and girls by promoting social change and economic self-sufficiency through advocacy and strategic grantmaking.

Women's Foundation of Montana (MT): The Women's Foundation of Montana makes grants that benefit women and girls as well as our communities overall. As the only statewide fund dedicated to funding for women and girls, donations are leveraged through our endowment. Our grant–making is focused on lasting change for women and girls.

Women's Foundation of Southern Arizona (AZ): The Women's Foundation of Southern Arizona is a social change organization committed to helping women and girls overcome economic, political, gender, and social barriers.

Women's Fund of Central Indiana (IN): Women’s Fund of Central Indiana mobilizes people, ideas and investments so every woman and girl in our community has an equitable opportunity to reach her full potential – no matter her place, race or identity.

Women's Funding Alliance - Washington (WA): The Women's Funding Alliance is the leading foundation in Washington state that invests in and advocates for women and girls. By strategically supporting organizations that promote progressive change for women and girls, we have a dramatic impact on the overall health of our community.

Womens Fund of Central Ohio (OH): The Women’s Fund of Central Ohio is fiercely committed to igniting social change for the sake of gender equality. We spark conversations, connect people and organizations, and influence the opportunity for economic empowerment and leadership for women and girls.

Women's Fund of Greater Milwaukee Area (Milwaukee, WI): We are the Women’s Fund of Greater Milwaukee, a community foundation working to grow our endowment to ensure there are always resources available to strategically support initiatives to advance equity for women and girls. We are the only foundation in Milwaukee that does this.

Wyoming Women's Foundation (WY): The Wyoming Women's Foundation invests in the economic self– sufficiency of women and the future of girls.


We hope this reference list helps you in your grant searching journey.

If you know of a grant that should be added to this list, please email at melissa@brainchildstudios with additional information!


Melissa Executive Assistant

Melissa has helped run large organizations for close to a decade and is excited to bring her mad organizational skills to the Brainchild Team. Melissa helps keep Brainchild’s engines running smoothly behind the scenes. When she’s not working, Melissa enjoys playing with her three kids, and occasionally finds time for some gardening and indulging in binging on BRAVO television shows. Don't judge.

more posts by Melissa

Related posts