OVERVIEW: The Tow Foundation centers its grantmaking on juvenile justice reform, especially as it applies to underserved populations; however, it is also interested in the "intersection of justice, public health, education and the arts." Grantmaking is generally restricted to Connecticut and New York but the foundation does award the occasional grant to national advocacy projects.
IP TAKE: Getting noticed by the Tow Foundation will be a difficult feat for any group that doesn’t already have an in here. The best bet for grantseekers here is to put their networking skills to work and make a connection.
PROFILE: The Tow Foundation was established in 1988 with a specific focus on issues related to juvenile justice in the state of Connecticut and funding programs that advocate for vulnerable families and communities in an effort to prevent incarceration, homelessness, poverty, and other social ills.
Although much of its focus is on justice reform, one of its strategic initiatives is concerned with the "intersection of justice, public health, education and the arts." The foundation primarily focuses on related projects in Connecticut and New York, although it will award grants to support national advocacy initiatives as well. The foundation seems less interested in funding isolated projects, preferring to establish long-term relationships with organizations that are active in advocacy (indeed, that is a requirement for funding) within their local communities.
Most of its grants are modest in size, rarely above $100,000, although it has made very large contributions to other pet projects of the Tow family.
To learn more about the types of organizations receiving Tow support and at what level, explore the Current Grants page on the foundation’s website.
The Tow Foundation does not accept unsolicited grant applications.
- Emily Tow Jackson, Executive Director and President
- Eileen C. Wiseman, Director, Strategic Initiatives