Community Grants Program

The Community Foundation of Central Wisconsin offers three competitive grant cycles annually to support emerging needs in Portage and Waushara counties, aligning with our values and five mission areas. The Community Grants Program is key to cultivating a community for everyone, supporting our most vulnerable, and ensuring nonprofit excellence. 

In 2024, we refined the Community Grants Program based on feedback collected from area nonprofit organizations and the community. The Visionary, Partner, and Major Project grant cycles are designed to address the specific needs and priorities identified by our partners. Each grant cycle has distinct eligibility criteria.

Applying for one of the grant cycles does not disqualify an organization from applying to any additional cycle within the same fiscal year. This flexibility allows nonprofits to seek funding for various initiatives that align with their mission and our community goals.


  • Compassion
  • Connection
  • Commitment

Mission Areas

  • Arts & Culture
  • Education
  • Environment
  • Helping People
  • Wellness

Grant Timelines

Visionary Cycle:
Applications Open: September 1 – October 31
Notification: Mid-December

Partner Cycle:
Applications Open: January 1 – 31
Notification: Mid-March

Major Project Cycle: 
Applications Open: May 15 – June 15
Notification: Mid-September

Competitive Grants Application Process

  1. Review grant opportunities to determine if you are applying for Partner, Visionary, or Major Project grants.
  2. The “Apply for a Grant” button below will take you to the online grant application portal.

If you are unsure of username and password tied to your organization, please contact Director of Community Grants and the Women’s Fund, Sarah Ross at

Funding Sources

The enduring support for our Community Grants Program has been made possible through the generosity of donors who have established the following endowments.

    • The Community Foundation of Central Wisconsin Grants Fund
    • Dr. Robert & Nancy Cooper Fund
    • Skyward Inc. Fund
    • Kaercher Charitable Fund
    • Bill & Harriet Fulton Memorial Fund
    • Arthur E. Heinz Charitable Fund
    • Hartford Waushara County Mission Fund
    • Portage County Community Mission Fund
    • Arts & Culture Mission Fund
    • Education Mission Fund
    • Environmental Mission Fund
    • Helping People Mission Fund
    • Wellness Mission Fund
Sarah E. Ross

Sarah E. Ross

Director of Community Grants and the Women’s Fund