2022 Funding Trends Preview

Every year, Minnesota foundations grant $2 billion in crucial support to nonprofit organizations and communities providing essential services. This amount has grown consistently over the last few years, and especially in the past 18 months as a number of groups have increased payouts to provide responsive funding in light of the disruptions posed by COVID-19.

While one hopes past behavior indicates future trends, a big lingering question on many nonprofit leaders’ minds is: What will grantmaking in 2022 hold?

As the MCN team prepares our digital 2022 Minnesota Grants Directory and for our 2022 Minnesota Grantmakers event (held virtually on January 13), we’re eager to share a few early insights that are emerging:

Continued focus on equity: A little over a year after the murder of George Floyd and an international racial justice movement, many corporate, private, and community foundations are continuing to advance racial equity in Minnesota through their grantmaking. (The Bush Foundation will distribute $100 million to Black and Indigenous people to close the wealth gap, and 3M has pledged $50 million to support equity initiatives).

System changes in grant cycles: Continued system changes from many foundations, who have eased their grant processes in response to the ongoing operational challenges brought on by COVID-19 (i.e.,: accepting grant applications that were written for a different funder, showing the full grant application in a Word doc beforehand, relaxed reporting requirements).

Leadership transitions: Key foundation personnel are shifting, and there have been both retirements and transitions of staff across the sector.

Join us virtually on January 13 at the 2022 Minnesota Grantmakers event, formerly known as Minnesota Foundations, an annual exploration of trends and financial outlooks of dozens of the most important Minnesota foundations. A team of panelists conduct interviews with foundation representatives and then offer key insights you won’t find anywhere else.

Interested in learning more about giving trends and the nonprofit economy? Check out these reports:

2020 Giving in Minnesota report by the Minnesota Council on Foundations
– Various impact reports issued by MCN

This article was originally published in MCN’s Fall 2021 Nonprofit News. Learn more about timely nonprofit topics like COVID vaccine policies, accessing American Rescue Plan funds, and more, in the latest issue.

Read Fall 2021 Nonprofit News