United Way of Southeast Mississippi (UWSEMS) invests donor dollars into the community through a community investment process. Two types of grant opportunities are available - Partner Agency Grants and Community Initiative Grants.  These grant must address critical needs in Forrest, Lamar, Marion and Perry in the areas of health, education or economic, specifically those the meeting goals and outcomes outlined in United Way of Southeast Mississippi's strategic planView UWSEMS's impact area goals.


Partner Agency Grant:

United Way’s Community Impact Committee and Board of Directors allocate funding to high-performing, nonprofit organizations that provide programs and services aligned with United Way's focus areas of health, education, economic mobility, and support services.

United Way Partner Agencies must: 

  • Provide services to Forrest, Lamar, Marion and/or Perry counties. 
  • Be incorporated and registered as a charity with the MS Secretary of State. 
  • Have a volunteer board of directors or advisory council that meets at least quarterly. 
  • Have been in operation for at least (1) year and be able to demonstrate a reasonable degree of continuity and an economical, effective and efficient operation. 

The Partner Agency grant process for April 2023- March 2025 investment period has closed. Applications for the next Partner Agency grant cycle of April 2025-March 2027 will open in the Fall of 2024.

Community Initiative Grant:

United Way of Southeast Mississippi offers small initiative grants (up to $5,000) to nonprofit organizations or community groups conducting projects to benefit a nonprofit organization. The nonprofit organization must be located in Forrest, Lamar, Marion or Perry county and projects must address a community need in the area of health, education, and/or economic mobility. Projects addressing needs directly related to United Way of Southeast Mississippi's impact area goals will be prioritized for funding. These funds are restricted to one-time expenses or short-term projects and not designed for ongoing program expenses, event sponsorship, or capital campaigns. Applications will be reviewed by the Community Impact Executive Committee in the last week of each quarter (June, September, December and March). A nonprofit organization can only receive one approved initiative grant per fiscal year (April-March). 

Click here to log-in and access the Initiative Grant Application.