Grant guidelines and eligibility

To make the most meaningful impact, we focus our grant giving to economic development issues tied to work, home and play. Organizations must also be based in and serve designated U.S. Bank communities.

Our grant program is designed to embrace the diversity in our communities. Organizations must have tax-exempt status under IRS section 501(c)(3) and certify that they maintain a non-discrimination policy that ensures the organization does not discriminate based on race, ethnicity, color, sex, religion, age, national origin, ancestry, citizenship, sexual orientation, gender identity and/or expression, disability, marital status, genetic information, veteran status or other factors that are protected by law.

Within these general guidelines, we consider the following funding requests:

Program or project grants

A program or project grant is given to support a specific, connected set of activities, with a beginning and an end, explicit objectives and a predetermined cost. We consider highly effective and innovative programs that meet our Community Possible grant focus areas.

Operating grants

An operating grant is given to cover an organization's day-to-day, ongoing expenses, such as salaries, utilities, office supplies and more. We consider operating support requests from organizations where the entire mission of the organization fits a Community Possible grant focus area.

Capital grants

A capital grant is given to finance fixed assets. The U.S. Bank Foundation considers a small number of requests for capital support from organizations that meet all other funding criteria, whose entire mission statement fits a Community Possible grant focus area, and with which the Foundation has a funding history. All organizations requesting capital funding must also have a U.S. Bank employee on the board of directors. U.S. Bank does not fund more than 1% of the non-endowment total capital campaign fundraising goal. All capital grant requests are reviewed and approved by the national U.S. Bank Foundation Board or by the U.S. Bank Foundation President.

Funding restrictions

The U.S. Bank Foundation Community Possible grant program will not provide funding for:

  • Organizations that discriminate based on race, ethnicity, color, sex, religion, age, national origin, ancestry, citizenship, sexual orientation, gender identity and/or expression, disability, marital status, genetic information, veteran status or other factors that are protected by law
  • Political organizations or organizations designed primarily to lobby
  • Programs operated by religious organizations for religious purposes
  • Fraternal organizations, merchant associations, chamber memberships or programs, or 501(c)(4) or (6) organizations
  • Section 509(a)(3) – Type III supporting organizations
  • Private foundations
  • Endowments or memorial campaigns
  • Fundraising events or sponsorships
  • Travel and related expenses including student trips and tours
  • Individuals, including those seeking scholarships or fellowship assistance
  • Deficit reduction

Support for national partnerships

United Way

U.S. Bank supports United Way through our annual employee giving campaign. We accept grant applications from the local United Way chapter where employees make their contributions. We accept general operating requests, as well as program grant requests that correspond with our Community Possible grant focus areas. Accepting applications January 1 - January 31.

American Red Cross

U.S. Bank is a committed member of the Disaster Responder Program, contributing national funds annually to ensure the American Red Cross can immediately implement disaster relief efforts. We accept program grant requests from local American Red Cross chapters for the Disaster Services Funding Program, Home Fire Campaign and Service to Armed Forces Program. Accepting applications January 1 - January 31.

We use an electronic Letter of Intent (LOI) application for the first round of grant consideration. If your application is selected to move forward, we’ll reach out with a second questionnaire. We recommend applying for a grant as early in the cycle as possible to allow for more time to submit the second questionnaire if requested. For more details on U.S. Bank Foundation grants, please refer to our grant guidelines.