Frequently asked questions


Meeting

Can I meet with the foundation administrator or other staff?

As much as we would like to be able to meet with all grant seekers, it is simply not possible for us to do so because of time and resource constraints. We encourage you to carefully review our eligibility requirements and take the time to submit a thoughtful and thorough grant application.

Contact

How do I get eligibility, request process or other information?

First, read about our eligibility requirements, focus areas and other information on this site. Because of the high volume of requests, we try to limit contacts. However, if you require more information, call 414-221-2107 or email

Focus areas

What are the foundation’s focus areas?

Our focus areas are: arts and culture, economic health, education and environment.

Eligibility

What are the requirements for a grant?

See our eligibility page.

Application

How do I apply for funding?

Online Grant Application and Reporting System.

Phone requests

Do you accept requests by phone?

No. All funding requests must be completed online and submitted to the We Energies Foundation office.

Deadlines

When are funding requests due?

Applications are reviewed on a quarterly basis. Applications for the first quarter must be received by Jan. 31, second quarter by April 30, third quarter by July 31 and fourth quarter by Oct. 31.

Approval timeframe

How long does the review and approval process take?

The process may take up to 90 days from the respective quarterly application deadline date. Be sure to submit your application at least three months before funds are needed.

Decision-making

Who makes the funding decisions?

Local giving panels made up of employees throughout our service territory meet quarterly to review applications and make funding recommendations.

Notification

How will I be notified of the outcome?

We mail or email the outcome of the review process — whether your application for funding was approved and the dollar amount.

Capital campaigns

Do you fund capital campaigns?

While we do support a limited amount of capital campaigns, the majority of our giving is for programs or projects.

Operating support

Do you provide general operating support?

Yes. We provide general operating support but prefer to support a particular program or project. However, we do not provide operating funds to individual United Way agencies that already benefit from our donations to United Way. While United Way supported organizations are excluded for general operating support, they are eligible to apply for a project, program or capital campaign and event sponsorships.

Amount

What is the appropriate request amount?

There is no standard amount that should be requested. The amount should be based on the program’s budget, existing organizational resources and the forecast for additional funding.

As you determine the amount to be requested, keep in mind that we have limited resources and there are a significant number of needs in all the communities we serve. A request for an amount that is not feasible may eliminate your project from our consideration.

Grant size

What is the range of We Energies Foundation grants?

The majority of our grants have been for $5,000 or less. Grants of $25,000 or more are rare. We consider many factors, including the specific project, program or initiative to be funded and the organization making the request, to determine funding amounts. Before allocating grants, the Foundation also takes into consideration many aspects of your proposal, including your organization’s mission, strategy, reputation, financial health, support from other funding sources, and the proposal’s overall budget and projected impact on the community.

Multiple grants

Can more than one grant proposal be submitted for review?

Typically, an organization only will be eligible to receive funding once per calendar year. That means that you have an option of submitting multiple proposals knowing that only one will be funded or submitting a single proposal that combines the projects. Some exceptions may be made when an organization hosts multiple divisions or departments, or when the projects target different areas of focus.

Energy price reductions

Can we apply for free or reduced rates on electricity or natural gas for our organization’s facility?

No. Regulations governing operation of charitable foundations such as the We Energies Foundation prohibit self-dealing activities. As such, we cannot provide support for programs that provide assistance with energy costs or energy-related projects.

Renewable energy

Does the foundation provide grants for renewable energy projects, such as solar photovoltaic or wind energy?

No. We do not provide funding for renewable energy projects.