Goals and Program Overview
The Wyomissing Foundation’s Family Grants Program honors the legacy of Ferdinand and Anna Marie Thun by supporting family members’ active participation in philanthropic endeavors in their communities. The Family Grants Program enables descendants of Ferdinand and Anna Marie Thun to identify organizations with exceptional potential for impact in the Foundation’s areas of interest, and to facilitate their application for funding. Although the vast majority of Wyomissing Foundation funds will remain dedicated to projects in the Reading, Pennsylvania region, where the philanthropic resources were generated, the Family Grants Program will fund projects in the communities, regions or neighborhoods where family members live.

The Family Grants Program seeks to promote a vision of shared prosperity, environmental stewardship, and livable communities. The program is grounded in the family’s history of innovation and risk-taking, along with a deep respect for the capacity of every individual.

Areas of Interest
Grant requests must fall within our general fields of interest:

  • Conservation/Environment
  • Arts and Culture
  • Human Services/Health Care
  • Education
  • Community and Economic Development
  • Social Justice

Within these fields of interest, the Family Grants Program will prioritize organizations that serve underserved, at risk, or marginalized communities.

Given the historical links between the Foundation and the Wyomissing area, the Family Grants Program is interested in supporting programs that address issues similar to those faced by Berks County communities and that have the potential to be replicated in Berks County.

The Family Grants Program will make two types of grants:

  • Program grants will support the activities non-profits undertake, such as direct service, policy advocacy, and education of the public.
  • Organizational development grants will support nonprofits’ organizational needs, including operating support, technical assistance, leadership development and organizational capacity building.

In addition to the previously mentioned focus on programs or organizations that benefit
marginalized, at-risk or underserved communities, the Family Grants Program is interested
in grants that include any of the following elements:

  • Leadership development, mentorship, and empowerment of people with limited access to power
  • Building on the assets of a community, using a strengths-based perspective to design and implement programs
  • Engaging communities in addressing the root causes of the issues they face through collaborative strategies such as grassroots organizing
  • Projects in which the leadership and staff reflect the community being served
  • Projects that raise awareness about social issues or discrimination and promote diversity and cross-cultural understanding
  • Projects that either replicate programs that the Wyomissing Foundation has previously supported or that are themselves replicable in other areas of the country.

For information about previous grants awarded by the Wyomissing Foundation, or for information about Berks County and its particular issues, applicants are encouraged to look at both the Wyomissing Foundation website (, or to contact the Wyomissing Foundation’s staff at (610) 376-7494.

Application Process

  • Prior to submitting an application, family members are encouraged to familiarize themselves with the Foundation’s history and philanthropic vision through the Foundation website or through dialogue with family Board members.
  • The sponsoring family member submits a short description (not more than one page) of both the proposed applicant organization and project, with a requested grant amount.
    • This description is to be emailed to:
    • Within two to three weeks of submission, The Family Grants Program’s Grant Review Committee will contact the sponsor regarding the outcome of the preliminary request.
  • If a full proposal is encouraged, the sponsor is expected to work with the nonprofit applicant to develop an application.
  • Assistance will be available from the Family Grants Program during the application process, as needed.
  • If an application is deemed incomplete, the sponsor will be contacted for follow-up.

Grant Eligibility
All applicant organizations must be a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, preferably with a board or advisory group that is reflective of the population or community being served. Organizations that employ or otherwise compensate a descendant of Ferdinand and Anna Marie Thun are not eligible for funding.

Sponsoring family members must be direct descendants of Ferdinand and Anna Marie Thun, and must be at least 18 years of age.

Grant Limitations
The Family Grants Program will not support organizations that discriminate against a person or group on the basis of age, political affiliation, race, national origin, ethnicity, gender, disability, sexual orientation or religious belief. It does not fund: capital campaigns; endowments; individuals, social, fraternal organizations or profit-making enterprises; purchase of tickets, tables, advertisements or sponsorships; parties, conferences, fairs or festivals; animal rights programs; religious activities; lobbying efforts, political action committees, or any politically sensitive causes. In general, the Wyomissing Foundation should not be the only funding source for an organization or project; if it is, there needs to be some explanation for why other sources of funding are not being considered or are not available.

Grant Types
Project Support. Most grants are given for one year; multi-year grants may be considered under some circumstances. Normally, only one grant is made to an organization in a 12-month period.

Grant Amount
$5,000 – $15,000


Application Instructions

  • All materials must be submitted in electronic format. Because of the extensive use of the internet in the evaluation process, and in consideration of the value of reducing the use of paper, printed material cannot be accepted at this time.
  • Please type your application.
  • Please include the application header on the first page, answer the questions listed, and submit the requested attachments.
  • Please be sure the application, including the header and excluding the attachments, is not longer than four single-spaced pages. Applications longer than four pages will not be considered.
  • Please note that faxes are not accepted and will not be considered for review.
  • Applications and attachments should be emailed to: Please do not mail additional hard copies. In-person, hand deliveries by applicants are not possible.
  • Please include the Application Cover Sheet and the Application Checklist with the application; these do not count toward the four-page limit.

Application Details
Please provide the information below in the order listed. Please type the following headings with your answer below each one. The application, not including the cover page, should not be longer than four single-sided pages:

  1. A brief statement of the organization’s mission, history, goals, and effectiveness.
  2. Describe the target population(s) to be served and their role in design/decisionmaking of the proposed project
  3. Briefly describe:
    1. The specific project to be funded;
    2. The project’s anticipated impact, including specific outcomes;
    3. Critical community needs being addressed;
    4. How the project fits into the organization’s current strategic or business plan;
    5. Who will be carrying out the work of the project, and their competency to do so; and
    6. How the project or its impact will be sustained beyond the grant.

In addition to the application, please include the following in electronic format. (Please do NOT refer to attachments in your application). Please do not include additional attachments not listed below, they will not be reviewed.

  • Cover Sheet
  • Letter of Support from Sponsoring Family Member detailing 1. relationship to applicant organization, 2. reason for interest in the proposed project, and 3. anticipated personal involvement in proposed project. Additional information may be included, but the letter shall not exceed one page in length.
  • Total Line Item Project Budget for the current year (if applicable)
  • Total Line Item Organization Budget for the current year
  • List of Funding Sources for the project (foundations, corporations and others of $5,000+)
  • Committed Funds for current year budget (indicate source and amounts)
  • Anticipated/Pending Funds for current year budget (indicate source, amount requested and status of your proposal)
  • List of Board of Directors with their affiliations
  • IRS 501(c)(3) Tax Exempt Letter
  • If a fiscal sponsor is being used, a cover letter from the fiscal sponsor stating their interest in and support for the project (if applicable)
  • Readily available materials in electronic format describing the organization and its activities (brochures, annual report, etc.). These are for background information only.
  • A completed Application Checklist form

Application Decisions and Deadlines
Your request will be reviewed in light of the Family Grants Program’s fields of interest and current priorities. Applications are considered twice a year, at the spring and fall Board of Trustees meetings.

Application deadlines and timelines are as follows:

  • For the spring Board meeting each year:
  • Initial one-page proposal: January 15
  • Full application: March 15
  • For the fall Board meeting each year:
  • Initial one-page proposal: July 15
  • Full application: September 15

Please Note: Occasionally the review process will require additional information or communication, so the decision process may take more than one application review cycle. When a final decision has been made, the Foundation will send a determination letter to both the applicant organization and the family sponsor. If an application is not approved, a member of the Review Committee will contact the family sponsor to discuss the reasons for the decision.

Monitoring and Evaluation
If an application is accepted, the family sponsor is expected to act as the FGP primary contact with the grantee and monitor the implementation of the grant. A member of the FGP Grant Review Committee will work with the Sponsor to establish program outcomes and appropriate assessment tools. The grantee will be expected to submit a final report at the conclusion of the grant that will include both financial accounting and a narrative of the program’s success at meeting the agreed upon outcomes.

Important Note: please review the Family Sponsor Responsibilities