Georgia-Pacific Supports Women & Girls Through Its "Four Es"

The Georgia-Pacific Foundation was established in 1958 by the papermaking and manufacturing company now headquartered in Atlanta, GA. The foundation views itself as a community-based philanthropic funder, and focuses on four areas of “investment”: Education, Enrichment, Environment and Entrepreneurship.

Theoretically, it doesn't matter which umbrella your program for women or girls sits under. (If the foundation pays special attention or gives more cash to some investment areas more than others, it doesn't tell us.) But you are required on the application to select one—and only one—area. Most likely, whichever one you choose will be based upon each investement area's focus, and what best syncs with the purpose of your program.

The two investement areas in which the Georgia-Pacific Foundation has grantees that are very evidently focused on women- and girl-specific programming are Entrepreneurship and Enrichment. The foundation mentions women specifically in its description of its “Entrepreneurship” support, stating a focus that includes "women and minority entrepreneur programs."

Its gender-specific support is also evident in the Enrichment category, where many grantees include youth development programs geared toward girls, as well as supportive services (housing, shelter, counseling) geared towards women.

Regardless of how you categorize your project, a unique aspect of Georgia-Pacific Foundation giving is that it comes to you as general operating support. But even though it generalizes its funding, this foundation has rigorous expectations for your program's impact, with an application that asks you to discuss how you will be able to tangibly measure improvement in the community you serve as a result of your program. But the foundation has a lofty purpose, too (it likes to use the word “potential”) so do not be deterred from pitching a project that aspires as much as provides measurable, results-oriented outcomes—just be sure not to forsake the latter.

In terms of those communities of women and girls where the Georgia-Pacific Foundation is looking to unlock potential: your organization or program must be located within 30 miles of one of Georgia-Pacific’s facilities. The company has a presence in 32 states, with multiple locations in many (10 in Texas, nine in Oregon, seven in California, four in Virginia, and four in Michigan, for example) so this geographic restriction still allows for a lot of eligibility for a foundation grant.

The Georgia-Pacific Foundation places no strict parameters on grant amounts, instead stating "when deciding what or if we will contribute, we consider the value of the program to our communities and the amount we have available to donate." But you will be required to put a specific ask amount into your application. For programs that focus on women or girls, a recent basic range has been $1,000 to $5,000 (with outliers on both sides).

Recent grantees in this realm include Girl Scouts of America chapters, Girls Incorporated chapters, and Junior Miss Scholarships, as well as $4,000 to Sistercare (Columbia, SC); $2,500 to the Society of Women Engineers (Corvallis, OR); and $2,500 to Cool Girls (Atlanta, GA).

The Georgia-Pacific Foundation has an open application process with a recently revised application. It's a rolling application, and the foundation states you'll receive notification within 60 days.

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