What is Empower Polk?

Empower Polk is an annual competitive grant program of the GiveWell Community Foundation with the goal of empowering local nonprofit organizations to become more efficient and sustainable. The GWCF grants committee reviews and advises on awards with final approval by the GWCF board of directors.

Empower Polk began in 2018 with a focus on infrastructure support, helping nonprofits get the additional training, tools, or technology they need to execute their mission. Empower Polk may change areas of focus year to year.

How Can You Support Empower Polk?

Funding for Empower Polk comes from contributions made to the GWCF Grant Committee Unrestricted Fund. Anyone can contribute to this fund, and 100% of all contributions go directly towards Empower Polk grants. GWCF donor-advised fundholders may request a grant from their fund to Empower Polk. Online donations can be made using the link below.

Who Can Apply?

The Empower Polk grant cycle is currently only available by invitation only to nonprofits organizations who have established an agency fund within GiveWell Community Foundation. Invitations to apply have been sent via e-mail to nonprofits who are eligible to apply for Empower Polk funding.


  • Empower Polk 2022 application was open March 1-18, 2022.
  • Empower Polk 2022 grants were announced on our blog in June. All grant applications were reviewed by GWCF’s Grants Committee for funding consideration.
  • Information on the 2023 grant cycle of Empower Polk will be available soon.

How to Apply and Report?


Empower Polk Guidelines

Start by reading the Empower Polk Application Guidelines.


Nonprofit Portal

Use the Nonprofit Portal to apply for and report on Empower Polk funding.


Video Tutorial

Learn how to use our Nonprofit Portal to apply for funding.


Project Budget Worksheet

Create a project budget with this Excel worksheet.

Previous EP Grants


Empower Polk 2022


Empower Polk 2021


Empower Polk 2020


Empower Polk 2019


Empower Polk 2018