Humana Foundation: Southeast Grants

OVERVIEW: This Louisville, Kentucky-based funder supports programs about healthy behaviors, health education and access to health services. Its support goes to many cities in the Southeast, and nationwide as well.

FUNDING AREAS: Healthy behaviors, health education, access to health services

IP TAKE: Louisville nonprofits tend to see a steady flow of support from the Humana Foundation. The other locations in focus shift from one grantmaking area to the next, so grant seekers should check the funder’s website to see which city is next in line.

PROFILE: The Humana Foundation, based in Louisville, Kentucky, was established in 1981 as the philanthropic arm of the health insurance company Humana Inc. It seeks to co-create “communities where leadership, culture, and systems work to improve and sustain positive health outcomes.” This is a funder that prioritizes three aspects of health grantmaking: healthy behaviors, health education, and access to health services.

Much of Humana’s support funds organizations in the Louisville, Kentucky, area because that is where Humana’s corporate headquarters is located. Here it supports both new and returning grantees that work more broadly in the field of community health and wellbeing.

For a recent grantmaking year, the following locations were also in focus: Baton Rouge, Broward County in South Florida, Knoxville, Louisville, New Orleans, San Antonio, and Tampa Bay. Other regional focuses tend to shift from year to year, but are often in the South and Southeast. Grant seekers can check the funder’s What We Fund page for an update on which cities are in focus at any given time.

The foundation and corporation combined have funded over $260 million in grants since 1975, and the foundation individually committed $10.5 million in a recent year. About one-fifth of those grants went to programs that focused on minorities. Grant seekers can see a sample of past grants on the funder’s What We Fund page to get a better idea of the types of programs that catch Humana’s attention.

The funder provides the following examples of programs that it considers to be strong and aligned with its mission:

  • An intergenerational mentoring program that incorporates health and fitness activities to positively impact at-risk youth and older adults

  • A health coach leading a peer-support group focused on diabetes prevention

  • A community engagement project that improves nutritional status for youth and families through fruit and veggie prescriptions

  • A free online peer-support program to address depression and bipolar conditions.

The foundation has a letter of intent process that accepts LOIs in early December. Then it invites select grant seekers to submit full grant applications online from mid-December through January. Grant seekers should only pitch projects to this funder that can be completed within 18 months of receiving funding. The minimum grant amount here is $10,000.

Although health and wellness are the top grantmaking focuses, this funder has also supported civic, culture, and education causes in the past. The Humana Foundation also has a matching gift program, scholarship program, and volunteer network associate recognition programs, and it supports the occasional disaster relief effort too.

Questions can be directed to the foundation staff at (502) 580-4140 or via email at


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