What We Fund

Overview of Our Grantmaking Program

The Woods Fund is particularly interested in supporting those organizations and initiatives that focus on enabling work and reducing poverty within Chicago's less- advantaged communities. Grants are given exclusively to organizations that focus on the metropolitan Chicago region and are concentrated in three program areas:

In addition, a limited number of grants are awarded in the Arts and Culture program area.

The successful grant seeker will assess its proposed needs in relation to the Woods Fund's mission, core principles and guidelines. Specifically, an applicant organization should determine whether the organization, or its project, embraces any of the following objectives within its mission statement:

  • Increasing opportunities for less-advantaged individuals and communities
  • Enabling less-advantaged people and communities to shape decisions that affect them
  • Helping to engage residents in civic life
  • Addressing the root causes of poverty
  • Promoting more effective public policies
  • Reducing racism and other barriers to equal opportunity
  • Promoting employment opportunities
  • Building a sense of community and common ground