Empowering Communities grants.

Grants of $1,000 to $50,000 will be awarded to organizations in Rhode Island focused on education; diversity, equity and inclusion; or sustainable communities.

Why Empowering Communities grants?

To support education initiatives; promote diversity, equity and inclusion; and strengthen community resources. Funds will be used to inspire students to explore career opportunities, facilitate community conversations on diversity and inclusion, encourage environmental conservation in the next generation and much more.


nonprofit organizations


in grants awarded

A typical grant timeline

Find out where we are in our current grant cycles and whether you can apply today.

January 1 – February 15
Grant applications accepted

August 1 – September 15

Grant applications accepted

March – April
Grants reviewed


Grants reviewed

Grants dispersed


Grants dispersed

Frequently asked questions.

Don’t see your question below? Connect with us.

Any nonprofit organization (501c3) working to improve the community through initiatives focused on:

  • Education
  • Community revitalization
  • Workforce development

Municipalities, churches, schools and chambers of commerce are not eligible. Applicants should be located in a region served by Rhode Island Energy. Grant requests from organizations located outside the Rhode Island Energy region may be considered, but the organization should prove that its activities benefit the Rhode Island Energy region in addition to other areas.

Our goal is to be a catalyst for change by supporting nonprofits working in the areas of education and development of sustainable communities. The PPL Foundation contributes millions annually to organizations in three focus areas:

  • Education
  • Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
  • Sustainable Communities

Our objective is to improve the quality of life in the communities we serve, with a particular focus on the five counties served by Rhode Island Energy: Bristol, Kent, Newport, Providence and Washington.

Only one grant will be approved per organization per year, and only one proposal can be submitted per organization per grant cycle.

  • PPL will not be the sole contributor to capital campaign requests.
  • No multi-year commitments will be made.
  • Requests from political, labor, religious groups, individuals or small groups of individuals will not be considered.
  • Requests for scholarship funding will not be considered. Please see our scholarship page.


All recipients of grants, sponsorship dollars and in-kind support from any of PPL’s giving programs must not discriminate in their hiring practices or delivery of services on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity, disability, medical condition, ancestry, marital status, sexual orientation, citizenship, age, pregnancy, genetic information or service in the uniformed services. Specific exclusions necessary to the essential operation of a program(s) will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis. (example: women’s shelter)

The PPL Foundation contributes millions annually to organizations in three focus areas:

  • Education
  • Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
  • Sustainable Communities

All applications will be reviewed by regional committees of local Rhode Island Energy employees and the officers and board of the PPL Foundation.

All applications will undergo the same review process, with a focus on whether projects:

  • Align with the PPL Foundation’s core mission and focus areas of education; diversity, equity and inclusion; and sustainable communities.
  • Address an urgent need in the community.
  • Target underserved populations.
  • Fill a unique niche or complement other ongoing efforts in the community.

The regional committees are made up of employees who live and work in the communities they serve to ensure local consideration of each grant application.

The PPL Foundation expects to award more than $3 million annually through all its grants and scholarships, including funding for United Way.

PPL Foundation is an independent, non-profit organization. Funded solely by PPL Corporation, the foundation was formed to support community initiatives in the areas served by PPL Corporation’s utilities.

Applications for Empowering Communities Grants will be accepted twice annually:

  • Spring between Jan. 1 and Feb. 15
  • Fall between Aug. 1 and Sept. 15

Access the online application portal.  

  • During a grant cycle, a link for the application portal will be available under one of the PPL Foundation grants.
  • First-time users in our application portal will need to complete a profile and create a password.
  • Click Start a New Major Grant Application to begin. You will need to provide the following:
    • Contact info
    • Organizational profile
    • A summary of your request
    • Uploads of any relevant documents (Ex: annual budget, program budget, annual reports, brochures, etc.)

Yes. You can save a draft. You can also print a copy of the application if needed.

You will be able to review your application before submitting. Once submitted, applications are no longer open for editing. If you run into technical issues, contact our technical support by clicking on the Need Support? Link at the bottom of each page.

Decisions on major grants will be made in June and December of each year. Grant applicants will receive written notification of the grant award decision. Applicants will be able to view the status of their requests in the Foundation’s online portal.

Still have questions? Contact us to learn more.

2022 Recipients

  • Amenity Aid
  • Big Brothers Big Sisters of RI
  • Books are Wings
  • Boys & Girls Clubs of Newport County
  • Boys & Girls Clubs of Pawtucket
  • Boys & Girls Clubs of Northern RI
  • Boys & Girls Clubs of Providence
  • Catholic Social Services of RI
  • City Year Providence
  • DownCity Design
  • Inspiring Minds
  • Jonnycake Center of Westerly
  • Leadership RI
  • McAuley Ministries
  • Meals on Wheels of Rhode Island
  • Mt. Hope Learning Center
  • Newport County Development Council
  • One Neighborhood Builders
  • Providence Children’s Museum
  • RI Community Food Bank
  • Save the Bay
  • Special Olympics
  • The Autism Project
  • The Gamm Theatre
  • The Learning Community
  • Warwick Boys & Girls Clubs
  • Year Up
  • Young Voices