Enhancing quality of life, inspiring learning, revitalizing communities and promoting access to the arts across the state of Minnesota is our family’s legacy – past, present and future.
Mardag Foundation believes that our community should not only benefit from our work, but inform and form it as well. Creating solutions to today’s issues requires a collaborative approach. Our work is also rooted in a commitment to racial equity.
We offer general operating, program and some capital support in three focus areas: Children, youth and families; older adults; and arts and culture organizations.
Mardag Foundation makes grants to nonprofit organizations and public entities located within and serving residents of Minnesota. The geographic focus of our grantmaking is the East Metro area of Dakota, Ramsey and Washington counties, as well as Greater Minnesota.
Mardag Foundation has three focus areas and will consider proposals that address one or more of the following:
Improving the lives of low-income Children, Youth and Families that lack access to critical opportunities and resources that they need
Mardag Foundation seeks to support organizations focused on eliminating barriers and increasing access to equitable opportunities for children, youth and families.
Priority will be given to organizations working with marginalized communities (especially Black, Indigenous and communities of color) at the intersections of education, basic needs, mental health, access to healthcare, pathways to employment, and stable and affordable housing.
Supporting older adults across Minnesota who lack access or have barriers to critical opportunities to thrive and create community connections
Mardag Foundation supports organizations directly serving low-income older adults who may also be experiencing other forms of marginality (e.g., Black, Indigenous, and People of Color, people with disabilities, members of the LGBTQIA+ community, etc.).
Priorities include meeting basic needs, improving the well-being and quality of caregiving, addressing isolation and mental health issues, services to help older Minnesotans age in place and/or in safe and stable housing, and intergenerational programming.
Building capacity to improve community vitality through Arts & Culture
Mardag Foundation shares Grantmakers in the Arts’ view that “all peoples, their cultures, and their art contribute to the meaning and understanding of our humanity and should be honored and celebrated.”
Priority will be given to arts and culture organizations that seek to amplify narratives and voices across BIPOC communities and other communities experiencing marginalization (e.g., older adults, people with disabilities, low-income children/youth/families, members of the LGBTQIA+ community, etc.) through the arts.
Please note that the Foundation has not historically supported specific productions, performances, exhibits, artist fees, and the like through this application-based process.
Grants can be made to 501(c)3 organizations, education or governmental units and religious institutions.
While an organization may be eligible to apply, attention and preference will be given to organizations:
- Prioritizing people experiencing the most marginalization, especially due to race, ethnicity, gender identity or sexual orientation, age, ability, immigration status, etc.
- Where work is informed, formed and led by the people most impacted by it.
- Working with Minnesotans outside the Twin Cities Metro Area.
- Seeking multi-year grants that place a priority on sustaining the work supported by the Foundation.
All applicants will need to register to use GranteeView. We encourage all prospective applicants to complete registration early.
Types of Grants
We will consider grant applications for:
General Operating Support
These grants provide flexible funding for nonprofits in which at least 50% of the organization’s services benefit residents in the East Metro and/or Greater Minnesota. Any organization meeting this threshold is eligible for general operating support (including organizations that have never previously received support from Mardag Foundation).
These grants are designed to provide support to a program or project serving 50% or more East Metro or Greater Minnesota residents. The Foundation will consider proposals for established and/or new programs/projects.
Any organization is eligible for this type of grant (regardless of overall geographic focus), but the project or program must serve 50% or more East Metro and/or Greater Minnesota residents. Priority will be given to organizations based in Minnesota.
The Foundation supports capital projects located in the East Metro or Greater Minnesota with 50% or more of services from that facility benefiting residents.
Grants are designed to support investment in buildings, facilities and equipment. Foundation investments are typically limited to buildings owned by nonprofits or held by long-term lease agreement. These grants are generally paid over multiple years.
How to Apply
We have two grant rounds each year.
1. Talk to the Grants Team
Before applying, all interested applicants are encouraged to email a member of our Grants Team to ensure that the grant program fits your needs.
2. Find Application Materials
Review grant round dates, application questions and other materials to help you apply.