Kemmons Wilson Family Foundation Grant

Kemmons Wilson Family Foundation

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Next deadline: Aug 15, 2020

Later deadlines: Jan 15, 2021

Grant amount: Up to US $10,000

Fields of work: Community Services Youth Development & Leadership Education Health & Medicine

Applicant type: Nonprofit

Funding uses: Education / Outreach, Capital Project, Project / Program

Location of project: Crittenden County, Arkansas, Counties in Mississippi: DeSoto County, Tate County, Tunica County, Counties in Tennessee: Fayette County Show all

Location of residency: Crittenden County, Arkansas, Counties in Mississippi: DeSoto County, Tate County, Tunica County, Counties in Tennessee: Fayette County Show all

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About this funder:



Kemmons Wilson Family Foundation Grant

The Kemmons Wilson Family Foundation is guided by its philosophy of engaging family, encouraging faithful stewardship, and building legacy.

The Kemmons Wilson Family Foundation honors the legacy of its founders, Kemmons and Dorothy Wilson and builds on their commitment to transform the Greater Memphis community through grantmaking and programs driven by family leadership.

We encourage first time applicants to apply for $10,000 or less. An organization is eligible to apply for more than $10,000 if it has an existing or prior funding relationship with KWFF. We make gifts of all sizes but our average gift size is between $10,000-20,000. Some gifts are in the form of a one year commitment or when warranted, multiple year commitments are considered. Please note there is no guarantee you will receive funding the second time you apply for the same or similar funds.

Funding Areas

We look to find strong leaders in organizations who understand the community need and commit all of their energy and efforts to addressing the issues with innovative thinking, smart strategies, and proven results. We have focused our areas of giving to the following:

Improving Community

Our founders were committed to seeing the city of Memphis stay great so we work deliberately in the Greater Memphis area to respond to community needs. Our gifts to the community range in size and in purpose but a few of them include Hope Works, Memphis Botanic Gardens, Pink Palace Museum, MIFA, Service Over Self, Shelby Farms Park, and The Wolf River Conservancy.

We know we must understand our city's issues in order to be effective in addressing them so we are actively engaged in the Memphis Grantmakers Forum and regularly schedule conversations with non-profits and other foundations to keep abreast of pressing concerns for our city.

Inspiring Youth

We believe all youth have leadership skills that can be developed and deserve as much support as possible to be the person God created. We seek to invest in organizations with a broad reach so we can make a difference in as many young people's lives as possible. We have a key partnership with BRIDGES as they continue to build out a wide variety of offerings for students to explore their leadership potential and exercise their voices in the community. 

We manage a program we created called The Wilson Society to inspire students to servant leadership and service in their sphere of influence. Other great gifts we've made include Boys and Girls Club Technical Training Center, STREETS Ministries, and JIFF, a juvenile intervention program. We want to encourage our youth to discover their talents and put them to use in meaningful ways.

Enriching Education

We recognize how important education is to an individual and a great education often becomes the key to access all opportunities. We manage our portfolio across the age spectrum and have significant gifts in place to ensure all people of all ages can attain a strong and quality education in our city.  

Promoting Health

We believe we must take care of ourselves and we must take care of our community. There are many health needs to address in individuals, some that are visible and many that often go unnoticed. We have been priveleged to partner with several of our great medical institutions like Baptist, Methodist, Methodist-LeBonheur, Christ Community Health Center, Church Health Center and Wings Cancer Center to ensure people receive the care they deserve. We are proud to announce a gift made this year in 2015 to the West Cancer Center, designed to be the leader in adult cancer care led by our very own Dr. Bill West.

Gifts range from providing patient support through free grief counseling, purchasing equipment to improve medical training, and capital improvements when needed.

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


  • In order to become eligible for consideration for grant funds, there are several required steps.
    • The organization must have an established and current operating 501c3 status. 
    • The organization must be impacting the Greater Memphis area, unless otherwise specified or invited by a Wilson family member to apply.
    • The organization must show leadership with its staff as seen in the results of programs or the success of the overall organization’s mission.
    • The organization must apply through our online grants management system.
    • The organization must provide sound financials (either audited or balance sheets).
    • The organization must provide a list of its established board members and make a statement as to the active nature of their board members


  • If the applicant does not have 501c3 status, operates outside of the Memphis area or is requesting funds for a special event, the applicant will not be allowed to complete an application.