The Belk Foundation awards the majority of its grants to organizations identified by our staff and board.
Ordinarily, Foundation staff contacts nonprofit organizations of interest for a preliminary conversation about their work and how a grantmaking partnership with The Foundation might help to advance it. We then present the work to a grants committee of our Board for consideration. If the committee expresses a strong interest in the work, we contact the organization and work with them on a proposal submission process. The Board reviews these proposals and has the final decision regarding which organizations The Foundation will fund.
The Foundation conducts two grantmaking cycles per year. The final application deadline for the spring cycle is April 1, with decisions made by late May, and the deadline for the fall cycle is October 1, with decisions made by late November. Please note that final applications are by invitation only and are typically issued six weeks prior to the final deadline (spring cycle applications are issued mid-February and fall applications are issued mid-August). Consider this time frame when reviewing the section below on introducing your organization to the Foundation.
Introducing Your Organization to The Belk Foundation through Letter of Inquiry
The Belk Foundation greatly appreciates the important work performed by nonprofit organizations in our communities. As such, we do not want nonprofits to spend considerable time and resources preparing materials for the Foundation unless there is a clear possibility of working together.
We welcome letters of inquiry from organizations that meet our strategic mission, geographic and grantmaking guidelines. If, after carefully reviewing our guidelines, you believe there is a strong match between your organization’s work and our mission, please introduce your organization to us.
The first step is to complete the Foundation's Eligibility Quiz. If you meet the Foundation's basic eligibility requirements, you will then be directed to a Letter of Inquiry form, which will ask you for the following information:
We will only review correspondence that is submitted electronically. Please do not mail a hard copy of your inquiry or any supplementary material unless requested by Foundation staff.
After receiving your inquiry, we will notify you within a few weeks to let you know whether your organization/program is a fit with the Foundation’s desired outcomes. Initial interest does not necessarily mean that your organization will be invited to apply for funding. The Foundation manages the number of organizations that are invited to complete the full application based on several factors, including funding availability. Ultimately, our goal with this process is to respect your time.