The Foundation has three grant cycles per year. In fairness to others, we adhere strictly to an 11:59 p.m. deadline on the filing dates. Applications submitted after 11:59 p.m. on the deadline date will not be considered. When the deadline falls on a weekend/holiday, the deadline moves to the next business day. The grant application process is entirely online.
In order to assist applicants who may not be familiar with our processes, we provide a Grants Workshop three times per year. We have created the workshop with new applicants as the target audience. The workshop helps to demystify the application process and answer commonly asked questions. Attendance is not required to apply, though it is suggested for those unfamiliar with the Iowa West Foundation.
1. Letter of Inquiry (LOI)
The LOI helps to establish the eligibility of your organization and the proposed use of funds. (NEW) We accept LOIs on a rolling basis. First-time applicants will need to create a Cybergrants account. Return applicants can login here. The due dates indicated in the Grant Cycles chart identify the final submission date to be confident that your LOI will go into the current grant cycle. LOIs received after the deadline for a particular cycle will be considered in the following cycle. LOIs are reviewed by Iowa West Foundation staff. Applicants typically receive a response via e-mail within 5 business days. If our staff note any areas of concern that may impact your consideration, we will call you to discuss.
Government entities and nonprofits based outside our funding area need to request a code to access the LOI.
Once your Letter of Inquiry is approved by the Iowa West Foundation, CyberGrants sends out a link allowing you to complete the full grant application. The e-mail is sent from firstname.lastname@example.org. All of the information completed through the LOI process is automatically transitioned into the application. You will not need to resubmit it. Applications are due by 11:59 PM on the filing date for the cycle.
Please note: Changes to your budget or information you provided as part of the LOI may turn an eligible request into an ineligible one. If you are planning to make significant changes, we encourage you to contact the grants team to discuss the impact of those changes.
3. Due Diligence
Due diligence is the research process that Foundation staff conduct in order to understand your request. Information provided through this process is shared with our Advisory Committees and our Grants Review Committee. Staff conducts these conversations with all applicants. Staff will reach-out following the submission of your application to schedule a time to speak with you. These conversations are often conducted in-person at your offices, though depending on distance or other factors they may be conducted by telephone. We attempt to keep these meetings as casual as possible. This is really our time to make sure we understand what you are trying to accomplish in your grant request.
Approximately three months after an application is submitted, the Foundation will notify all grant applicants of funding decisions. Not all applications are funded. If an organization is not funded, a brief explanation will be provided. If the Board has awarded funding to an organization, Foundation staff will work with the organization to establish the evaluative indicators that the organization will use to measure the grantee’s impact.