State Giving FAQs

Eligibility

My organization has a pending 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status or just recently received 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status, and I am receiving a system error. Can I still request funding?

No. Only organizations that are currently listed in the Internal Revenue Service's current 50 State Master File are eligible. If you believe that a system error is preventing you from submitting an application, please contact the IRS at 1-877-829-5500 and request to be added to Publication 78, also known as the 50 State Master File.

My organization has received a grant through another Walmart Foundation program. Am I eligible to apply for a State Giving grant?

Yes. Organizations are eligible for consideration through multiple Walmart Foundation programs at the same time.

Can I receive more than one State Giving grant within a fiscal year?

Yes. An organization may receive multiple State Giving grants during the same fiscal year (February 1 – January 31), provided they are for programs being managed in different states. Organizations can only receive one grant per state per year. 

Can I submit State Giving applications for consideration in multiple states?

Organizations may receive only one grant per state per calendar year. Nonprofit organizations, including national organizations applying on behalf of their affiliates serving more than one state, must apply in each state for locally specific work. Generic applications submitted to multiple states will not be considered.

Are organizations within the Washington, D.C. area eligible for State Giving grants?

Yes. Organizations that serve the Greater District of Columbia metro area, including regions within the metro area that are physically located in Virginia, Maryland and Delaware are eligible to apply. 

Selection Process

Who makes the funding decisions for grants awarded through the State Giving Program?

Each State Advisory Council helps identify local needs within its state, reviews all eligible grant applications and makes funding recommendations to the Walmart Foundation. Councils base recommendations on alignment with Foundation focus areas, state or community needs and program eligibility criteria. The Walmart Foundation reviews recommendations before issuing its final funding decisions.    

What can I do to ensure my application has the best chances of being approved for funding?

Follow the guidelines. Read all eligibility guidelines and FAQs prior to applying.  If it appears that your organization will not meet all the guidelines, it is recommended that you not apply. Common mistakes preventing applicants from receiving grants include:

  • Grant applications that exceed 25% of the organization’s annual operational budget are not considered. Since the State Giving funding minimum is $25,000, organizations with operating budgets below $100,000 are not eligible to apply.
  • Grant applicants requesting more than 10% of the funding to support overhead costs are not considered.
  • Grant applicants requesting funding for program-related personnel expenses that exceed 50% of the annual compensation for a single position are not considered. 
  • National organizations that apply to multiple states using generic or copied applications or that are for programs and services not specific to the state in which they are applying are not considered.
  • Organizations with a current State Giving grant that apply for additional funding before the Impact Report for their previous grant has been submitted are not eligible to apply. See Award Conditions section below for more information about Impact Reports.
Make your proposal straightforward. Each State’s Advisory Council is composed of associates working in the field and who have familiarized themselves with the needs of communities in your state. Please remember to provide clear, concise explanations of your program and try to avoid using jargon. It may be helpful to have someone not involved with your program read your application to make sure it is easily understood for the layperson.

Right-size your request. States’ total annual giving budgets range from $225,000 to $2,000,000 depending on factors including size, population and needs. Many organizations “aim high” or over-promise when it comes to the amount they are requesting. Be realistic about what it will cost to implement the program you are proposing. It may be helpful to know that while we allow requests from $25,000 to $250,000, the average amount of grants approved is $40,000. Typically, only one or two grants are funded at the $250,000 level per year.

Focus on impact. Many applications focus only on the process, rather than the impact. We want to know what you will do and how you propose to do it, but also what you expect it will achieve, why you think it will achieve those results and how you will measure your success. It is often helpful to share prior evaluation results from your organization’s work, a short summary of research on best practices in the field and stories of the impact of your work, to help demonstrate your organization’s ability to deliver impact.

How can I contact the State Advisory Council for my state?

We do not provide Advisory Council contact information. If we have questions about your application, a Walmart Foundation representative will contact you.    

Should I mail additional materials to the Walmart Foundation to supplement my funding request?

No. A Walmart Foundation representative will contact your organization if additional information is needed. Only materials included in the electronic application will be considered.

Does the Walmart Foundation respond to inquiries regarding the status of an application?

No. Due to the volume of State Giving Program applications, the Walmart Foundation cannot respond to inquiries regarding eligibility or funding decisions. 

How competitive is this program?

On average, around 10% of the applications received are funded.    

If I do not receive a grant, will my application automatically be resubmitted for review during the next cycle?

No. Applications are only eligible for consideration during the review cycle in which they are submitted.    

Funding Exclusions

Why are scholarships not eligible for funding through this program?

The State Giving Program is focused on addressing the needs of local communities. To support education, the Walmart Foundation provides scholarships to students by supporting various nonprofits that provide scholarships, such as United Negro College Fund, Asian Pacific Islander College Fund and many others. The Walmart Foundation also offers scholarships to qualified Walmart associates and their dependents.    

Why are immediate disaster relief efforts not eligible for funding through this program?

The timetables and deadlines of the State Giving Program do not lend themselves to effective disaster response. Walmart and the Walmart Foundation support immediate disaster relief efforts through the company’s disaster relief program. Learn more about Walmart’s disaster relief efforts

Why are funding requests that are directed to relief efforts in foreign countries excluded from consideration?

The purpose of the State Giving Program is to support unmet needs within each state. The Walmart Foundation supports international relief efforts through other programs.

Can my organization request funding for capital improvements?

Generally, no. However, infrastructure capacity building such as vehicles or freezers may be considered for organizations in the Hunger Relief & Healthy Eating focus areas. 

Can I apply for a multi-year grant through the program?

While we understand the need for multi-year funding, the State Giving Program is not structured to support or evaluate multi-year investments.  New funding applications must be submitted each year.

Can I request a product donation or gift cards instead of a grant through the program?

No. Only financial grants are available through this program. Requests for in-kind donations (products and gift cards) should be made to your local Walmart or Sam’s Club facility. 

Award Conditions

Are there restrictions to using the grant within a specific state?

Yes. If a grant is awarded to an organization for work within a particular state, funds must be fully allocated within that state. The only exception is for grants awarded to organizations located in the District of Columbia. Organizations that serve the Greater D.C. metro area -- which includes the regions of Virginia, Maryland and Delaware -- are eligible to submit a funding application that covers the Greater D.C. metro area.    

How will I know if I have been selected to receive a grant from the State Giving Program?

Applicants not selected to receive funding will be notified via e-mail regarding the status of their request. Applicants selected to receiving funding will receive notification via postal mail. For communication timelines, please see the 2014 State Giving Program Funding Cycle Schedule.    

If I receive a grant, what are the reporting requirements?

All grant recipients are required to submit two impact reports detailing how the grant was used and what outcomes were achieved. A midterm report is due six months after funding is awarded. The final report is due one year after funding is awarded. Grantees are not eligible to reapply until the Walmart Foundation has received the six-month midterm report. 

In accordance with past program guidelines, organizations that received funding prior to 2014 are required to submit only one impact report 12 months after their funding date. Due to the changes in cycles for 2014, there may be timing issues for organizations that received funding during the second cycle of 2013. Organizations who are eligible (based on program focus) to apply for either of the *Focused Giving cycles- 1 or 2- may do so prior to the completion of the impact report for their 2013 grant. The impact report will still be due 12 months after the award date.