American Express Corporate Responsibility Grants

American Express Foundation

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Deadline: Rolling

Grant amount: Unspecified amount

Fields of work: Civic Leadership Development Volunteerism & Philanthropy

Applicant type: Government Entity, Nonprofit

Funding uses: Training / Capacity Building, Project / Program

Location of project: Argentina, Australia, Canada, China, France Show all

Location of residency: Argentina, Australia, Canada, China, France Show all

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Corporate Responsibility

We provide backing to the communities where our customers and colleagues live and work. It’s good for both our business and our communities to invest financial and human resources in ways that address the social, environmental and economic needs of our communities, customers, colleagues, shareholders and partners. Learn more. 

Philanthropy & Employee Engagement

Visionary nonprofits are always there for their communities. We’re always there for them. We support and volunteer with organizations that:

  • Develop the next generation of leaders
  • Preserve and sustain historic places
  • Encourage community service and civic participation.

Our Strategy & Mission

We’re here to help our customers and their communities thrive. That means putting our service ethic to work enabling communities to prosper, and assisting when a helping hand is needed.

Strong communities enable thriving people and businesses. This shapes our responsibilities as a corporate citizen. Through our philanthropic and community work, we seek to strengthen communities by serving and supporting the people and organizations that are tackling some of society’s toughest challenges.

In 1954, we created the American Express Foundation, a New York-based non-profit that supports charitable organizations. Since then, together with our Foundation, we have provided nearly a billion dollars to thousands of causes around the world.

We focus our charitable giving in three areas:

  • Developing leaders: We help develop emerging leaders who are addressing society's most complex issues.
  • Preserving places: We promote stewardship of the historic places that bring value to local communities and sustain our shared cultural heritage.
  • Serving communities: We enable nonprofit organizations to have a greater impact by engaging community members, including our own colleagues, as volunteers. 

Priority Areas

Developing Leaders

We work hard to attract, develop, and retain top talent to build our leadership pipeline. This commitment to identifying, developing and backing leaders extends to our communities.

For over a decade, we have devoted significant resources to creating and funding programs that strengthen leaders within nonprofit and social purpose organizations working to solve the world's biggest challenges. Since 2008, we have invested more than $80 million to develop more than 100,000 social purpose leaders who are tackling some of society's most complex issues.

Chances are, there are American Express-trained leaders working in your community — for the causes you care about — right now. 

Preserving Places

American Express has deep roots in the travel services industry, stretching all the way back to World War I. That’s why we feel so connected to historic sites around the world. We understand the cultural and economic value they bring to communities. We are committed to backing the continuing stewardship of these sites to ensure they can be experienced and enjoyed by you and generations to come.  

We support projects that help communities preserve or rediscover major historic landmarks and public spaces, providing sustainable, ongoing access to the public, now and in the future. Our emphasis is on sites that represent diverse cultures and engage the public in unique ways.

Grant Criteria

Applications for Historic Preservation grants are accepted by invitation only. The projects we support embrace the preservation, restoration or sustainability of historic places and demonstrate their significance to the community through one or more of the following:

  • Restoring historic places to ensure ongoing public access and engagement.
  • Preserving historic places for innovative or adaptive use.
  • Sustaining historic places by creating systems to manage increased visitor activities and environmental impacts.

Serving Communities

Volunteers are the heart and soul of communities. The ability to effectively engage volunteers can make a tremendous difference in nonprofit organizations’ ability to fulfill their mission, expand their work, amplify their profile and grow their base of supporters.

For community members, volunteering is a way to develop skills, practice leadership, build social networks and enjoy a sense of purpose and connection.

We partner with nonprofit organizations to build volunteerism into their business model, focusing on long-term engagement rather than one-off events. One significant way we do this is through Serve2Gether, which brings American Express colleagues into communities.

You can learn more about this opportunity by visiting the funder's website.


  • Eligible organizations must: 
    • Certify tax-exempt status under Section 501(c)(3) and 509(a)(1), (2) or (3) of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code. Organizations outside the U.S. must be able to document nonprofit status.
    • Not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, genetic information, citizenship, veteran or marital status, or any other basis prohibited by law.
  • Your project will have a better chance of receiving funding if it’s located in one of these geographic areas:
    • United States
      • Greater Phoenix
      • New York City
      • Salt Lake City
      • San Francisco
      • South Florida
      • Washington, D.C.
    • Around the World
      • Argentina
      • Australia
      • Canada
      • Greater China
      • France
      • Germany
      • India
      • Italy
      • Japan
      • Malaysia
      • Mexico
      • Philippines
      • Singapore
      • Spain
      • United Kingdom


    • Leadership: Because the mission of the American Express Developing Leaders program is to support social purpose organizations by developing their current leaders, we do not fund leadership programs for high school or college students or support scholarships for individuals' personal leadership training.
    • Please do not submit funding requests for:
      • Individual needs, including scholarships, sponsorships and other forms of financial aid.
      • Fund-raising activities, such as galas, benefits, dinners and sporting events.
      • Goodwill advertising, souvenir journals or dinner programs.
      • Travel for individuals or groups.
      • Sectarian activities of religious organizations.
      • Political causes, candidates, organizations or campaigns.
      • Books, magazines or articles in professional journals.
      • Endowments or capital campaigns, except restoration projects.
      • Traveling exhibitions (we will only consider each venue on its own).
      • Sports sponsorships.

    This page was last reviewed July 27, 2020 and last updated July 27, 2020