All applicants are required to speak with a program officer to confirm eligibility to apply and to discuss the proposed project prior to submitting an application.
The foundation supports efforts primarily in the Omaha metro area and across the state of Nebraska. We also make grants in that portion of Western Iowa within 100 miles of Omaha, as well as other geographies of interest to Mr. Kiewit.
We award grants to nonprofit organizations with a valid 501(c)(3) status and to units of government. We do not provide funding to individuals, for-profit businesses, other private foundations, individual K-12 schools, or churches.
We give primary consideration to proposals that are most closely aligned to the foundation’s Impact Areas. We invest in proven and promising programs, systemic solutions, capital projects, general operations, planning and capacity building, and policy development. The Foundation does not provide funding to support debt retirement, operational deficits, endowments, general fund drives/annual appeals, event sponsorship, or routine public works projects.
An applicant may submit up to two funding applications (for separate projects) in any 12-month period. If an application for a project is declined, another application for that same project cannot be re-submitted for one year. For this reason, it is beneficial to postpone submitting an application until the strongest possible case can be made for a project.
Mr. Kiewit, a self-made man, wanted to invest in organizations and communities that demonstrate the ability and desire to help themselves. Mr. Kiewit frequently referred to a three-legged stool metaphor, with funds from the applicant and its immediate support group as one leg, funds from the larger community as the second leg, and funds from philanthropy as the third leg. He believed that this balanced support ensured “ownership” of the project by those who would need to sustain it into the future. For this reason, all Peter Kiewit Foundation grants are awarded on a matching funds basis with the following maximum levels of foundation participation:
– Non-profit organizations may apply for a maximum of 50% of the total project cost
– Units of government (tax-supported entities) may apply for a maximum of 25% of the total project cost
It is to an applicant’s advantage to have developed at least a portion of the matching funds needed before submitting a request.
There are no limits on the size or duration of the grants that may be requested. However, while the foundation does consider and has made grant commitments for multiple years, it is not the practice of the foundation to provide permanent or continuous support for a project, program, or organization. As such, it is important that the applicant demonstrate their ability to sustain the work after the proposed grant period ends.
The foundation receives a high number of worthy grant requests and it is not possible to fund all of them. Primary consideration is given to proposals that are most closely aligned to the foundation’s Impact Areas. All grant decisions are made by our Trustees at our quarterly meetings. When making grant decisions, the Trustees consider the opportunity for impact, the gravity of the issue being addressed, the organization’s ability to execute and sustain the work, and the level of community support. A decision to decline funding does not mean that the foundation disapproves of the proposed project or that we do not recognize its value.
Most grants are approved or declined per our stated deadlines, but occasionally action is deferred in cases where the Trustees would like additional information prior to making a decision. In such cases, foundation staff will contact the applicant to develop the additional information or arrange a meeting if needed. Previously awarded grants are listed on our website, but should not be viewed as established precedent for future decisions.
There are many factors that determine the size and duration of a grant. Considerations include, but are not limited to, the amount of the request, the nature and scope of the project, the foundation’s history with the organization, the level of community and organizational support, and past foundation grants for similar projects.
Each grant contains specific disbursement terms and conditions that are detailed in documents the grantee must sign to activate the grant. Payment of grant funds for programs or capital construction is usually conditioned upon the grantee developing the balance of funds needed to complete the project. When capital construction grants are approved, foundation funds are paid only after the construction has been completed and the facility is available for its intended use.
Grant documents specify the reports the grantee is required to submit to the foundation and when the reports are due. Requirements are unique to each grant, but typically cover fundraising, project status, outcomes and impact.