Women’s Giving Circle

First meeting of the Women’s Giving Circle on June 14, 2018, Photo by John Walker
The Women’s Giving Circle is a diverse, dynamic and generous group of women engaged in an exciting venture of strategic philanthropy. Organized by the Missoula Community Foundation and the Women’s Foundation of Montana, we will collectively pool the resources of at least 100 local women to leverage their modest gifts into $10,000 grants for worthy local organizations! The Circle will be created by the members, and they will vote on who will receive funding.

We hope you will want to be part of awarding a $10,000 grant (or more!) to make change happen in our community!

Plus, you will get to:

– Find your community of philanthropic sisters.
– Work together with them to invest big dollars for big change.
– Learn how to be a more intentional and impactful giver. 
– Change the world and have fun while you do it! 

Frequently Asked Questions

  • You don’t have to be a woman to be part of the Circle, but women will make all of the funding decisions. All members will have an equal vote. Men can attend events, donate and encourage organizations to apply for grant funds.

  • We want to make sure that women of all income levels can participate in the Women’s Giving Circle. We have monthly giving options so you can stretch your donation throughout the year. 

    Giving Levels:
    Basic level: $120
    Bronze level: $300
    Silver level: $600
    Gold level: $1200

    For the 2018 cycle, we are allowing women to join at a financial level that is comfortable to them, even if it is less than our basic level membership.

    A portion of your donation will be invested in the Missoula Community Foundation and Women’s Foundation of Montana to grow women’s philanthropy in our community. 

  • For the first cycle, the grantees will be organizations focused on women and/or children. Members will decide the focus of future grant cycles.

  • Emphasis will be on long-term impact and sustainable projects. Grants will not be given for events or scholarships. Grantees will be 501(c)(3) organizations, including fiscally sponsored organizations.

  • Approximate Timeline/ProcessSubject to change

    1. Recruit members and get pledges by Sept. 1st
    2. Recruit steering committee members. Applications due by August 15th. Selected by September 10th.
    3. Announce grant opportunity mid-August; announce grant amount Sept. 1st
    4. Nonprofit Application period Sept. 1-Oct. 8
    5. Steering Committee evaluates applications Oct. 8-Oct. 29th 
    6. Finalists notified by Oct. 29th. Finalists will prepare a presentation for the selection party
    7. Selection party November 13th, with online voting for 1 week afterwards
    8. Announcement on Giving Tuesday, November 27th 
    9. Grant awarded mid-December
  • Active members of the Women’s Giving Circle will be eligible to serve on the steering committee. Terms will be one year in length. This first term will include the pilot grant in 2018 and all of 2019.

    The deadline has passed to apply for the 2018-2019 steering committee.

  • No, it is a program of the Missoula Community Foundation in partnership with the Women’s Foundation of Montana.

  • The membership will decide what will happen to funds raised in excess of $10,000. They may be granted during the current cycle or carried over to seed the next grant cycle.

  • Grantees will be selected according to the following criteria:

    1. 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status. Fiscally sponsored organizations are welcome to apply.
    2. Maintain a primary office within Missoula County. Preference will be given to organizations that provide a majority of services to people within Missoula County.
    3. A demonstrated track record of providing services needed by the community.
    4. Must serve women and/or children. This is subject change for future grant cycles.
    5. Adopted or are willing to adopt LGBT-inclusive nondiscrimination policies in employment, volunteer and board recruitment and in providing services (sample policies available upon request).
    6. Preference will be given to organizations that can demonstrate collaboration.
  • Businesses have the opportunity to sponsor the Women’s Giving Circle. They will not be able to vote for the winning nonprofit but a portion of their contribution will go to the grant recipient. If you are a business sponsor and also an individual member of the circle, you are able to vote.

    Click here to view the Business Partnership Packet>>

    For more information on business involvement contact Nikki at the Missoula Community Foundation, Nikki@MissoulaCommunityFoundation.org or call 406-926-2846.

Join Today!

Are you ready to make big impact on your community with other like-minded women? You can make a secure online donation by clicking on the button below. 

If you would prefer to join via check, please make it out to Missoula Community Foundation and add “Women’s Giving Circle” to the memo line. You may mail the check to P.O. Box 8806, Missoula, MT 59807. Contact Nikki Robb at nikki@missoulacommunityfoundation.org or (406) 552-7347 for assistance.

Grant Applications Accepted Sept 3-Oct 8 (new extension!)

If you work for a local 501(c)(3) organization (or are fiscally sponsored by one) focused on women and/or children’s issues, your nonprofit is eligible to apply for a Women’s Giving Circle grant. Review guidelines above for more information.