Innovation and Impact Grants Program

Donate Life Wisconsin (DLW) supports its mission through the DLW Innovation and Impact Grants program. Annually, funds are made available to support projects focused on either:

  • increasing the number of individuals who register to become organ, eye and tissue donors
  • increasing the number of donated organs/tissues available for transplantation

Proposed projects for 2024 should be designed to address one or more of the following:

  • Specific demographic, age or professional group
  • Unique geographic location (county, region or tribal area) of Wisconsin
  • Transformational change in professional/clinical practices, policy or systems
  • Unmet need related to increasing donor registration or the availability of more donated organs/tissues in Wisconsin

Funding requests may be between $10,000-$50,000/project. Requests outside of this range will not be considered. A project must be completed between January 1, 2024, and December 31, 2024 – no exceptions. Organizations must have the ability to begin a project on or shortly after January 1, with or without a signed contract.

There is no limit to the number of projects an eligible organization may submit for consideration. At least one organization involved in a collaborative project submission must meet the ‘eligible organization’ criteria.

Eligible organizations located outside of Wisconsin may submit an LOI if the proposed project will be conducted in Wisconsin.

The LOI submission period is May 1-June 2, 2023.

Letter of Interest submissions have expired.

What is the DLW grants program?

DLW is authorized to provide funds to organizations to promote the donation of organs and tissue, to promote organ and tissue transplant research, and to advance patient services involving organ and tissue transplants in Wisconsin.

Who can apply for an impact grant?

Organizations that are eligible to apply or serve as the lead organization for a DLW grant-funded project must be recognized as exempt for federal taxation under Section 501 (c)3 of the IRS Code, be able to provide proof of charitable status in Wisconsin (if applicable) and be able to submit an externally audited financial statement at the conclusion of the grant.

May organizations collaborate on a proposed project?

Organizations proposing to collaborate on a project must include at least one organization that meets all eligibility criteria. This organization will be considered the primary (lead) organization . The lead organization will sign the Grant Agreement, serve as the fiscal agent and assume responsibility to meet all reporting requirements.

Can an organization that provides services in states other than Wisconsin be eligible?

If an organization performs its programs in states in addition to Wisconsin, the Grantee must limit any funding that it receives from DLW to its Wisconsin activities.

Can an individual apply for a DLW grant to encourage organ and tissue donation?

Individuals are not eligible to receive grants.

What are permitted use of funds?

Permitted use of grant funds is defined in the DLW Grants policy and outlined in the Request for Proposal document.

Examples of allowable expenses include consultant, contract or staff time to implement the project; office supplies, postage, copying related to the project; meeting expenses related to the project.

What are examples of expenses not permitted?

Non-allowable use of DLW grant funding:

  • Expenses billed to/reimbursed from federal/state agencies or other entities e.g., CMS
  • Personal expenses, e.g., cost of living, fines, damages
  • Clinical care or other costs associated with treatment or direct care
  • Direct or indirect lobbying activities or legal fees
  • Financial gifts, e.g., scholarships, endowments, aid, gift cards
  • Entertainment or alcoholic beverages
  • Costs or activities not directly related to the project implementation

What components must be In the letter of intent (LOI)?

Organizations must complete a separate Letter of Intent (LOI) for each project.

The components of the LOI include:

  • Organization information
  • Project contact
  • Project name
  • Type and focus of the project
  • Need project will address
  • Data substantiating the need
  • Project overview with anticipated outcomes
  • Impact Statement (Answer one or both questions)
    • How will this project increase the number of individuals who register to become organ, eye and tissue donors?
    • How will this project increase the number of donated organs/tissues available for transplantation?
  • Funding amount requested ($10,000-$50,000)

How can an organization apply for a DLW grant?

Eligible organizations complete and submit a Letter of Intent (LOI) by the deadline.  Organizations may be invited to submit a full proposal after review.

What are the largest and smallest amounts that an organization may request?

Each year, the Donate Life Wisconsin Board of Directors establishes the budget allocation for the Grants program.

What are the reporting requirements?

The Grantee will submit monthly updates, a project mid-point report and a final report. Grantees are required to keep a record of all receipts and expenditures relating to the grant. These reports will describe progress, outcomes, learnings.

Additionally, Grantees must submit an audited financial statement detailing the use of the grant funds. Statements should be prepared in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles.

What is the timeline?

The Innovations & Impact Grant program timeline:

  • May 1             LOI submission process opens
  • May 9             Grants Information session (Virtual)
  • June 2            LOI submission process closes
  • June 19          Notification to LOI applicants regarding project status
  • July 28           Deadline to submit full project proposals
  • August 21       Notifications to Project Finalists
  • October 4       Project presentations to DLW Board of Directors
  • November 1    2024 Projects announced