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Lilly Endowment Inc. (Indianapolis, Indiana & National)
B - Readily funds technology as part of an award
Lilly Endowment, Inc.
Lilly Endowment grantmaking focuses primarily on enhancing the quality of life in Indianapolis and Indiana. The Endowment provides funds for human and social needs, central-city and neighborhood revitalization, low-income housing, and arts and culture in Indianapolis. The Endowment is interested in initiatives that benefit youth and that promote the causes of philanthropy and volunteerism. They consider proposals in three program areas:
- Community Development - Their community development grantmaking focuses primarily on enhancing the quality of life in Indianapolis and Indiana. They grant funds for human and social needs, central-city and neighborhood revitalization, low-income housing, and arts and culture in Indianapolis. On a statewide level, the Endowment routinely offer initiatives to support community foundations and United Ways;
- Education - Their education grantmaking revolves primarily around our interest in improving education in Indiana, with special emphasis on higher education and on programs designed to increase the percentage of Indiana residents with bachelor's degrees. They support a number of invitational grant programs, many of which are aimed at the abilities of Indiana's colleges and universities to increase the state's educational attainment level. They also support on an invitational basis programs that enhance higher education opportunities for African-Americans, Native Americans and Latino Americans throughout the country; and
- Religion - The primary aim in this field is to deepen and enrich the religious lives of American Christians, principally by funding efforts to encourage, support and educate a new generation of talented pastors and to strengthen current pastors in their capacities for excellence in ministry. They seek to help congregations be vibrant, healthy communities of faith, and we encourage efforts that make accessible the wisdom of the Christian tradition for contemporary life. They support projects that strengthen the contributions that religious ideas, practices, values and institutions make to the common good of the society. They support theological schools and other educational and religious institutions that share these aims. Their work in religion is national in scope.
- Youth and Philanthropy - Besides grantmaking in our three principal areas, we award grants in support of youth development and the advancement and study of philanthropy and the nonprofit sector. Their youth grants support direct service organizations in Marion County, Ind., build the capacity of intermediary organizations throughout the state, and provide professional development for the staffs and volunteer leadership of these organizations. Regarding philanthropy, we seek to support and nurture good stewardship among the trustees and executives of charitable organizations by providing on an invitational basis funding for research on the governance and effectiveness of nonprofit organizations. They also support efforts to advance philanthropy by supporting selective research projects and educational programs focused on charitable giving and fundraising.
In 2020 The Lily Endowment has made available additional funds to assist Indiana communities respond to the COVID-19 crisis. The support consists of a $30 million grant to Indiana United Ways (IUW), which will rapidly distribute these resources primarily through its statewide network of local United Ways to help meet needs in Hoosier communities, and a $3.5 million grant to United Way of Central Indiana (UWCI) to help meet needs in the five counties it serves outside Marion County.
History of Funding
A list of recent awards can be found here: https://lillyendowment.org/news-and-insights/recent-grants/
The Endowment generally does not support the following:
- Loans or cash grants to private individuals. Most grant money is awarded to charitable entities. The Endowment does not assist individuals with personal or business-related finances;
- Requests to discharge preexisting debts of individuals or organizations;
- Healthcare projects;
- Mass media projects. The Endowment does not typically fund mass media projects and limits consideration to projects that fall squarely within its specific program areas;
- Endowments or endowed chairs. The Endowment targets its grants for specific purposes. Except in unusual cases involving longstanding grantees or special initiatives, the Endowment does not contribute to endowments or endowed chairs;
- Libraries. Except for special initiatives, the Endowment regularly declines grants to public libraries outside Marion County, Indiana; and
- Outside Indianapolis. Requests usually are declined for building campaigns, elementary/secondary education, arts and culture, human service projects, general operating funds and neighborhood projects (except as part of invitational grant programs).
Eligible applicants are nonprofit organizations involved in community development, elementary/secondary education, and higher education. In keeping with the founders' wishes, the Endowment gives priority to efforts that improve the quality of life in Indianapolis and Indiana.
The Board of Directors considers grants in quarterly in March, June, September, and December.
Award amounts vary by proposal.
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