Maryland Grant Guidelines

We appreciate your interest in Wells Fargo's philanthropic goals and objectives. At Wells Fargo, we believe that grant-making decisions are more effective when made locally. That's why Wells Fargo is actively involved in the communities where we live and work, and why our team members are leaders in helping our communities succeed.

Wells Fargo makes contributions in areas that we believe are important to the future of our communities’ vitality and success. We direct our contributions to non-profit organizations that work to advance the following focus areas.

Primary focus areas:

Community Development

  • Preventing foreclosure and promoting home ownership
  • Creating and sustaining affordable housing
  • Revitalizing low-income neighborhoods
  • Aiding the path to employment with workforce training and job-readiness skills
  • Supporting small business development through technical and financial assistance
  • Providing financial education training (please visit before applying; we will not fund the cost of supplies for similar financial literacy programs)


  • Eliminating the pre-K – 12th grade achievement gap through services that support low- and moderate-income students
  • Providing mentoring and out-of-school programs that support academic success

Secondary Focus Areas:


  • Preserving our environment through education programs that teach green practices

Human Services

  • Addressing critical needs such as hunger and homelessness
  • Enabling and sustaining independence for individuals and families

Arts and Culture

  • We support art, culture, science and history organizations’ educational outreach programs through our competitive Cultural Excellence Grant program; organizations from Montgomery County and Prince Georges County are part of our Greater Washington region and should refer to the Arts and Culture guidelines on the Washington D.C. page. If you wish to receive our next Cultural Excellence Grant request for proposal, please send your contact information and request to

NOTE: Please pay special attention to our deadlines for each focus area which are noted in the “How to Apply” section.

Wells Fargo makes contributions to organizations with tax-exempt status under Section 501(c)(3) of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code, as well as qualified tribal and governmental agencies, including public school systems.

Please note that Wells Fargo is unable to consider grants for the following:

  • National initiatives (however, we do encourage requests from local affiliates for programs occurring in our region)
  • Individuals seeking scholarships, fellowships, or sponsors for a particular cause
  • Individual K-12 schools
  • Animal-related causes (for example, rescue societies)
  • For-profit entities, including start-up businesses
  • Political, labor, religious, or fraternal activities
  • Organizations other than 501(c)(3) nonprofits, governmental or tribal entities

The following requests receive lower priority:

  • Private foundations
  • Recreation, athletic, or sports teams, programs, or leagues 
  • Supporting organizations sub-classified as 509(a)(3) by the IRS
  • Capital campaigns

Wells Fargo prefers to fund outcome-driven programs versus unrestricted sponsorships and events for non-profits. However, if you would like to request support for a non-profit fundraiser or event, you may apply without regard to the focus area application process below. All sponsorship requests must be submitted online at least 90 days in advance of the event and no later than August 31, 2019.

Focus Area Application Process

Please visit the Our Giving Priorities tab to review our focus areas and determine the focus area category that corresponds most closely with the program for which you plan to request funding. You are invited to submit your funding request during the application period listed below for the focus area you have identified for your program. Requests that are incorrectly categorized or received outside these application periods will be declined.

  • Human Services: January 9, 2019 – February 8, 2019
  • Education and Environmental: February 15, 2019 – April 15, 2019
  • Community Development: May 1, 2019 – July 1, 2019
  • Cultural Excellence Grants: July 15, 2019 – August 31, 2019

If your organization meets Wells Fargo’s eligibility requirements and fits with our philanthropic goals and objectives, we encourage you to proceed with our online application.

Apply now

For more information or assistance in determining your focus area, please contact:

Monica Mitchell
Community Relations Officer

How do you define “low- and moderate-income” individuals and families?

“Low- and moderate-income” is defined as income less than 80 percent of the area median income for the community served.

Are there deadlines?

Yes, please review and adhere to the application periods stated on the How to Apply tab.  Event and fundraiser sponsorship requests must be submitted online at least 90 days in advance of the event and no later than August 31, 2018.

How long does it take for an application to be reviewed?

You may expect to receive a response within 60 days of your focus area’s application period ending.

May I call during the review period to check on our application status?

We respectfully request that you wait 90 days after submitting an application before contacting us regarding your status. In most cases, you will have heard from us within that period.

Is there someone locally I can submit my request to?

Please submit your request through our online application only.

Will someone from Wells Fargo make a site visit to our organization?

Due to the volume of requests we receive, it is not always possible to personally visit each organization. When we do make site visits, they are only to requesting organizations that have submitted complete proposals, or organizations that have previously been funded.

If we are declined, may we reapply?

Wells Fargo receives far more grant requests from worthy organizations than we can support. If your application is declined, you are welcome to reapply the following year.

When can we expect the check if we are approved?

A check is normally sent out within 30 days of approval.

May we apply in more than one focus area or more than once a year?

No. Organizations may only submit one grant application per year. If that request is declined you are asked to wait until the following calendar year to resubmit.

Do you have any advice for how best to structure our request?

The “Funding Purpose- Project Description” serves as the executive summary of your request. You will be asked to upload “Detailed Project Information.” Please be concise and limit that document to 2-3 pages. If you received a grant from Wells Fargo in the prior year, explain the impact of that funding. Describe who you serve, the need for support, how funding would be used and what impact you plan to expand or sustain.