Fund Distribution Process

The Fund Distribution Process determines the distribution of United Way funds to area nonprofit organizations. This annual review happens each spring after area nonprofits submit funding applications, asking for support in the areas of Helping Children Succeed, Empowering Healthy Lives and Stabilizing Families and Individuals. In short, this rigorous process means that United Way is serious about how it invests one of its key resources: your dollars.

How it works:

The concept is simple: take the people who are doing the work day after day, and let them tell their story. These people represent the nonprofit agencies that work hard every day in our community, from providing basic needs and emergency services, supporting individuals and families, educating our children and youth, or promoting health, wellness and safety.  Our goal is to determine their impact on the community, what needs they see, who they serve, how they spend the money.

Iron Range non-profit agencies interested in applying for funds during UWNEMN's 2019-20 cycle were asked to submit pre-applications by September 15th. The UWNEMN Board of Directors will review all pre-applications. Agencies  with programs that best fit witihin UWNEMN's Investment Plan and address the Targeted Issues will be asked to complete full applications. Full applications are due January 24th from Iron Range agencies.

Currently funded agencies in Koochiching County are not required to fill out a pre-application. If new Koochiching agencies are interested in applying for UWNEMN funding, please review UWNEMN's investment plan to determine if you are a good fit to fill out a pre-application. If you would like a pre-application or more information about this process, please contact or 218-254-329.

After the applications are received, they are carefully evaluated by panels of UWNEMN volunteers. Each year, approximately 70 UWNEMN volunteers undergo training, review the applications, interview the non-profit agencies (next on March 19, 2020), and finally, debate the best distribution of UWNEMN funds. These volunteers will then make a recommendation to the UWNEMN Board of Directors on how UWNEMN funds should be distributed.  If you are interested in being a part of this vital process, please contact UWNEMN at

2019 Iron Range partner agencies

2019 Koochiching County partner agencies

What it means:

UWNEMN's Investment Plan outlines the community issues that UWNEMN is addressing through the work of our funded agency parterns and our own initiatives. Through our annual campaign, we raise funds that are united from across our region to make an impact in these areas.


The fund distribution review process goes beyond a review of numbers, results and data; it provides an avenue for change, where resounding messages of gaps and needs in the community can be heard. This process has often planted the seeds for new UWNEMN programs.  As the community's needs become apparent, we are able to generate awareness and convene stakeholders and resources to address the issues.


Be aware:

UWNEMN has been made aware of instances of fraud in Pennsylvania and Alabama in which scammers have stolen citizens' information pretending to be from the United Way. No one from United Way will ever contact you, unsolicited, with a grant offer. UWNEMN will never request personal information like passwords or bank accounts for fund distribution.