Grants to Individuals

Using a Private Foundation to Give Directly to People in Need

Although private foundations routinely grant to charities and other nonprofit organizations, many philanthropically inclined individuals don’t realize that foundations may also make grants to individuals. Our foundation clients use these types of grants to provide relief to victims of forest fires, hurricanes, and terminal illness. The recipients can use the funds to pay for everything from roof tarps to emergency cooking and heating equipment.


As long as certain procedures are followed, the IRS permits private foundations to make hardship and emergency grants to individuals without seeking prior approval. Based on IRS publication 3833, Foundation Source has created a streamlined process and forms for our clients to make the following types of grants:

Emergency Assistance grants provide financial aid for individuals and households that have experienced some kind of life-altering emergency, tragedy, or natural disaster that has rendered them unable to meet their basic needs (e.g., flood, fire, violent crime, physical abuse, or trauma). Recipients don’t have to demonstrate financial need, and they may use the funds to pay for food, clothing, shelter, transportation, medical treatment, and professional counseling.

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