Whether you’re just starting out, or a seasoned pro, it’s good to know what kind of nonprofit foundations exist and how they differ. In this post, we’ll help you understand what a corporate foundation is and who they might partner with in their communities.

What is a nonprofit foundation?

A nonprofit foundation is an organization that supports charitable acts for the good of the nonprofit sector and the constituencies nonprofits serve. Foundations grant nonprofit organizations funding for general or operating support, or for program development or project support. The three basic types of foundations are community, corporate, and private foundations. In this post, we’ll focus on corporate foundations and giving programs.

Tip: some foundations will grant funding to a broad range of missions and causes, while others may be more limited to specific nonprofit missions or organizations located in a specific geographic location.

What is a Corporate Foundation or Corporate Giving Program?

Corporate foundations and corporate giving programs are a type of private foundation that receive funding and award grants for a corporation. This type of foundation most often makes grants to nonprofits that operate or provide services that improve the quality of life in their employees and customer’s communities. Many of these foundations and giving programs emphasize employee involvement. There are some corporate foundations and giving programs that will also donate products in addition to making grants (often referred to as “in-kind” donations).

Some examples of corporate foundations and giving programs include: U.S. Bancorp FoundationWal-Mart Foundation, and Wells Fargo Foundation

When appealing to corporate foundations and giving programs, remember that these organizations:

  • Want to be good citizens and community members;
  • Want to support their employees; and
  • Want to draw attention to or market their business or products.

Curious about other types of foundations? Read about private foundations or community foundations here.

Whether you are new to grantwriting or a seasoned pro, we want to make sure you’ve got all the information and resources you need to succeed in their charitable missions. Check out our Grantwriting Basics posts for more essential information about grantwriting.