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Strategic Funding

Grantmaking is a large part of how the Health Fund achieves its mission, and we see each grant as an opportunity to move toward our goal of healthy Kansans. To best leverage available resources, the Health Fund is focused on opportunities in the following program areas:

Mental Health graphic
Fit Kids graphic
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Foundation for Success: Healthy Social and Emotional Development
Obesity Prevention:
Start Healthy with Breastfeeding
Access to Health Care:
Opportunity for Fairness and Equity

These three program areas are discussed in more detail here. In addition to these general focus areas, the Health Fund seeks to support Great Plains United Methodist churches in health ministry work through the Healthy Congregations program.

Grant guidelines

The general rules applicable to all grant decisions are as follows:


    • Grants are not awarded to individuals or for individual medical, dental, or other personal care treatment.
    • Grants can be awarded only to 501(c)(3) organizations or governmental entities, except upon special approval of the Board of Directors and approval of legal counsel.
    • Contracts for services may be approved with for-profit groups for reasonable compensation.

Kansas only*.

    • Grants shall be made only for support of projects which provide services or benefits to persons or organizations in the State of Kansas.
    • The Health Fund does not fund projects in foreign nations or other U.S. states.
    • *The Fund's Healthy Congregations program is open to Great Plains Conference churches (Kansas and Nebraska).

No uninvited/unauthorized applications or proposals.

  • The Health Fund will reject without consideration any proposals or applications which were not authorized or invited in advance by a Health Fund program officer. We encourage organizations to call or email us with any questions or ideas for possible funding.

Western Kansas preference.

  • The Health Fund has a preference for grants doing work within the former boundaries of the Kansas West United Methodist Conference**.
  • The Health Fund will particularly seek opportunities for grants in that region and will require, as reasonably possible, location of events and fair allocation of project work within that region when there is a project of statewide reach.

United Methodist partnerships.

  • The Health Fund seeks to utilize partnerships with Great Plains Conference local churches and with Kansas agencies, institutions, and judicatory structures in fulfilling its work. From time to time, the Health Fund will target opportunities for program work to those United Methodist groups, including some preference in RFPs and similar grantmaking programs for United Methodist relationships.
  • Preference does not mean that a project proposal of poor quality by a United Methodist group will be approved but may mean that some approaches such as set-asides and targeting will be utilized to encourage participation by United Methodist groups offering equivalent quality.

Strategic focus areas.

  • The Health Fund has focused its efforts on a select group of funding areas to achieve greater impact with limited resources. Our grants are limited to projects addressing one or more of those areas.

Capital projects and endowments.

  • Generally, capital projects and endowments are not funded. This is particularly true when there are large capital campaigns or projects where Health Fund monies would represent a "donation" to an effort.
  • There may be cases where small capital campaigns can complete an operating project of particular strategic interest to the Health Fund and these will be considered.

On-going operating grants.

  • The Health Fund is a "special needs" funder and generally does not provide regular operating expenses of on-going projects.

Maximum grant term and renewals.

  • No grant shall be made for a term of longer than five years.
  • The total term (base period and renewal) may extend beyond five years.

Indirect costs.

  • Grants may not include more than 10% for indirect costs.

Alcohol exclusion.

  • Grants may not be used for the purchase of alcoholic beverages.

**The historical Kansas West Conference (now a part of the Great Plains Conference) was comprised of 68 counties in the western two-thirds of the state. The Health Fund seeks to improve the health of all Kansans, but gives special emphasis to work serving the western two-thirds of the state.

Map showing Kansas UM Conferences