MATCH Grant Approach
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The goal of the MATCH grant program is to support communities in implementing healthy eating and active living programs, along with environmental change initiatives that support healthier communities across Iowa and South Dakota. 

The MATCH grant program encourages and supports creative projects that enhance the health of Iowans or South Dakotans through visionary health thinking in cities and towns, counties, public entities and nonprofits that will intentionally leverage our funding to attract additional funds from other sources. 

The MATCH resources are being offered to serve as a catalyst to bring other funding to important health needs of a community that impact environmental and policy approaches necessary to impact health locally.  Specific preference for this funding is to advance work in: 

  • promoting active living and built environments
  • increasing access and consumption of nutritious foods

Through this MATCH grant program, we are using our grant funding as a catalyst to leverage funders (corporate, private, governmental, individuals, families, community foundations, United Ways, local giving circles, etc.) to support the area of local health status improvement. This involves explicitly using our grant awards as a matching/challenge grant.

What Are Matching Grants?  The term “matching grant” means that you are required to raise some amount of money to “match” the amount of the grant. The money you raise in addition to the grant is called “the match.”  Within a pre-determined period of time after you receive the grant award notification, you’ll have an opportunity to use our grant to secure other funding and conceivably double the grant ($1:$1 match). 

Matching grants are good opportunities for those receiving this kind of funding support to gain additional funding for a project or initiative.  The grant donor (Wellmark Foundation) that's offered a matching grant mechanism is intentionally trying to leverage additional funding commitment(s). 

This type of funding can create a powerful platform to engage other funding sources to advance health status improvement locally.  Your organization can use this commitment of support to motivate others to take action through this structured leverage funding opportunity. 
Each MATCH grant award in 2014 will be a maximum of $75,000 for up to two-year funding periods. 

  • The grant awards must be matched dollar-for-dollar by resources, either cash or in-kind, identified by the applicant.  At least one half of the matching support must be a cash match.  Applications that do not include assurance of the potential for securing adequate matching funds will not be accepted beyond the LOI phase. 
  • If invited to the invitational application phase and then ultimately selected for funding (in early August 2014), you’ll have until mid-December 2014 to demonstrate you’ve secured the required dollar-for-dollar match so your grant award from The Wellmark Foundation can be released. 
  • The project applicant/fiscal agent is responsible for ensuring the match requirement is met; however, community/project collaborators can also contribute, allowing the cumulative project team to achieve the required match.
  • The scoring tool to be used in evaluating the LOIs is available to you on our website.

Approximately 15 to 20 percent of LOI applicants each cycle are typically invited to submit full proposals. Once they reach invitational application stage, nearly half are often selected for funding awards in most individual grant cycles.  We anticipate this will be the experience with the MATCH grant program in 2014.  Actual percentages to be determined by the quality and depth of the applicant field for this particular grant application opportunity.

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