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Enhancing the quality of life, inspiring learning, revitalizing communities and promoting access to the arts across the state of Minnesota is our family’s legacy — past, present and future. We are a member of the Minnesota Council on Foundations and embrace the grantmaking principles for Minnesota grantmakers.

Update on final reports

In June we will adopt a new technology system to manage our work, including our grantmaking. For our grantees, we have two timely updates. First, all outstanding final reports for existing grants are waived. Second, if you’d like to download Saved Grant Applications for your records, please do so in the Grant Portal before April 30, 2022. These will not be available in the new system.

Grant guidelines

We will continue to offer general operating, program and some capital support in 2022. Transitioning to a new Grant Portal system requires a large testing and data migration effort, which necessitates freezing our current system for a period of time. To ensure that we can still deliver critical funds into the community during this process, we are introducing a one-time transitional grant round in Round 1 of 2022.


The Mardag Foundation makes grants to nonprofit organizations and public entities located within and serving residents of Minnesota. The geographic focus of our grantmaking is the East Metro area of Dakota, Ramsey and Washington counties, as well as Greater Minnesota.


The Mardag Foundation has three focus areas and will consider proposals that address one or more of the following.


Round 1, Transitional Grant Round

The 2022 Round 1 cycle will be a transitional round. It will open in January to selected grant recipients who received grant awards in 2020 or 2021. Only grantees who received a grant in Round 1 of 2020 (May), Round 2 of 2020 (November), or Round 1 of 2021 (May) will be eligible to be selected to apply for a grant in Round 1 of 2022. Not all eligible grantees will be selected to apply. In addition, grantees who were notified of a grant award in Round 2 of 2021 will not be eligible for Round 1 of 2022.

Round 2, Open Grant Round

Round 2 will open in the summer of 2022 and will use our new Grant Portal. This round will be open to all nonprofits that meet our current grant guidelines, with the exception of those who received a grant in Round 1 of 2022.

Grants can be made to 501(c)3 organizations, education or governmental units and religious institutions.

Current & Past Grant Status

Current grantees are eligible to apply for funding that would begin after the end of their current grant period. Nonprofits that have received three years of consecutive funding are eligible to apply for a grant. Questions? Please contact a member of our Grant Team.

Types of Grants Available

The Foundation WILL consider grant applications for:

  • General operating – these one-year grants provide flexible funding for nonprofits in which at least 50% of the organization’s services benefit residents in the East Metro and/or Greater Minnesota.
  • Capital projects – These grants are designed to support your organization’s investment in buildings, facilities and equipment. Foundation investments are typically limited to buildings owned by nonprofits or held by long-term lease agreement. These grants are generally paid over multiple years.
  • Program grants – these grants are designed to provide support to a program or project serving residents of the East Metro or Greater Minnesota. The Foundation will consider proposals for established and/or new programs/projects.

Grant Requests Not Accepted

The Foundation WILL NOT consider grant applications for:

  • Programs exclusively serving Minneapolis and the surrounding West Metro area
  • Scholarships and grants to individuals
  • Sectarian religious programs or organizations
  • Federated campaigns
  • Events and conferences
  • Capital campaigns of private secondary schools
  • Capital and endowment campaigns of private colleges and universities

Important Dates

We have two grant rounds each year.

Round 1, Transitional Grant Round: Grant applications for the 2022 Transitional Grant Round, Round 1, will open on Jan. 4, 2022, and close at 3 p.m. on Jan. 11, 2022. 
Eligibility: Selected nonprofits will be notified by mid-December 2021 to apply. Grant awards will be disbursed by April 2022.

Round 2, Open Grant Round: Grant applications for the 2022 Open Grant Round, Round 2, will open in the summer of 2022. 
Eligibility: Nonprofits that meet our general grant guidelines will be eligible to apply, with the exception of those who received a grant in Round 1 of 2022. Grant awards will be disbursed by December 2022.

  • December 2021: Notification of change to 2022 Grantmaking
  • Mid-Dec 2021: Selected nonprofits will be notified to apply for Round 1
  • Jan 4, 2022: Round 1 Grant Applications open
  • Jan 11, 2022: Round 1 Grant Applications close at 3 p.m.
  • April 1, 2022: Round 1 Grants will be awarded
  • Summer 2022: Round 2 will open (final dates will be announced in late spring 2022)
  • December 2022: Round 2 Grants will be awarded

More information can be found on the Grant Resources page.

Contact Us

Before applying, all interested applicants are encouraged to contact a member of our Grant Team to ensure that your grant fits the requested need.

Learn more

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Grant deadlines

We have two grant rounds each year. More information can be found on the Resources page.

Community Impact team portrait

Contact us

We strongly encourage you to contact a member of our Grant Team before submitting an application.

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Apply for a grant

To apply for a grant with Mardag Foundation, visit GranteeView, our online grant portal. You're encouraged to start the portal registration process early.

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Search what we have funded

Take a look at past grantees to see the types of programs and projects we fund.