Domestic Hunger Grants


We are church together, working toward a just world where all may have life and have it abundantly.

ELCA World Hunger Domestic Hunger Grants accompany congregations and their partners throughout the United States and Caribbean as they draw on the strengths of communities to address local issues such as food security, clean water, housing, job access, human rights, policy change and more. Together, these ministries are part of a comprehensive approach to breaking the cycle of poverty and hunger — for good.

To learn more about ELCA World Hunger and to apply, check out the resources on this page.

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Our priorities

Accompaniment of communities toward a just world where all are fed means breaking down barriers between neighbors, ensuring just laws and policies for all and addressing the root causes of hunger. That’s why ELCA World Hunger is excited to partner with ministries and projects that are transformative, holistic and integrated, providing bread for today and hope for tomorrow.


Accompaniment of communities requires ministries to work to break down barriers, reduce inequality and build strong relationships that can move us toward a just world where all may have life abundantly. Ministries that exemplify what it means to accompany communities build relationships across the lines that divide our communities with an eye toward justice for all. This might look like projects centering deep relationships with partners and community members.

Domestic Hunger Grants

Intergenerational jardín comunitario (community garden) program at Kinsmen Lutheran Church in Houston, Texas.




Justice focused ministries are narrowed in on the intersections and draw on the many strengths of communities to respond to need in multiple, related ways. Maybe this means providing know your rights workshops while also distributing food resources no questions asked, providing food items tailored to folks experiencing homelessness while advocating for affordable housing, and much more. Addressing multiple causes of hunger and poverty through the lenses of migrant, economic, racial, gender and environmental justice make ministries and projects more sustainable and effective.

Domestic Hunger Grants

Metropolitan Organizing Strategy Enabling Strength (MOSES) develops powerful grassroots leaders from marginalized, low-income communities of color in SE Michigan, with an emphasis on the intersections of racial and environmental justice.




The ELCA is called to be both a serving and a liberating presence in the world, meeting the immediate needs of neighbors through mercy and working for long-term, systemic change through advocacy. Ministries centering liberation may address root causes of poverty by facilitating opportunities for people facing oppression to advocate for meaningful policy change, or they may organize the people most affected for collective community action.

Domestic Hunger Grants

Centro De Trabajadores Unidos En La Lucha (CTUL) organizing over 300 members of neighborhood organizations, faith leaders, union members, community groups, and faith leaders to walk alongside Twin Cities construction workers in a mile-long march for dignity and respect.



Our Domestic Ministry Partnerships and Investments

This year, ELCA World Hunger is partnering through Domestic Hunger Grants with 149 ministries spread out across 57 synods and 41 states, including Puerto Rico and Washington, D.C.

ELCA World Hunger is also investing in twelve ministries that demonstrate excellence, innovation and best practices that align with ELCA World Hunger’s priority areas in substantial, sustainable ways through one-time Big Dream grants. Big Dream grants are by invitation.


ELCA World Hunger is also investing in the sustainability of ministries that demonstrate excellence, innovation and best practices that align with ELCA World Hunger’s priority areas in substantial, sustainable ways through Big Dream grants. Big Dream grants are by invitation to current partners and for up to 3 years of funding.

Sign up here to receive news from ELCA World Hunger about what our incredible ministry partners are up to!


Daily Bread Grants

These grants provide daily bread for neighbors experiencing hunger while also serving as a catalyst for garnering additional financial support. Funding from a Daily Bread Grant is meant to supplement existing food-based ministries. ELCA World Hunger Daily Bread Grants will be made available to congregations on a rolling basis. You may submit a request for a Daily Bread Grant beginning on May 1, 2024. In 2024, ministries feeding K-12 students over the summer or after school in the following states: Alabama, Alaska, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas and Wyoming will be prioritized.




How to Apply: Domestic Hunger Grant


Grant Awards

  • Awards will be for a three-year cycle, with a maximum award of $10,000 per year, contingent upon fund availability and the completion of annual evaluations.
  • New applications are accepted annually. The application period typically opens in spring.


Priority Focus Areas

Domestic Hunger Grant Application draw on the strengths of communities to identify and address local issues such as:

  • Food security
  • Clean water
  • Housing
  • Job access
  • Human rights
  • Policy change
  • and more


Eligibility & Criteria

  • At a minimum, ELCA World Hunger Domestic Hunger Grant applicants must be:
    • a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization;
    • able to demonstrate a strong, recognized and established relationship with a congregation, ministry or institution of the ELCA;
    • able to demonstrate a strong, recognized and established relationship with the community in which the work will take place; and
    • actively engaged in the work described in the application.
  • Given the priority areas described above, ELCA World Hunger especially seeks to support ministries that:
    • clearly address root causes of hunger in communities;
    • demonstrate strong commitment to diversity and inclusion in leadership and decision-making, including direct engagement of people who themselves are experiencing hunger or poverty;
    • create or foster opportunities for advocacy toward systemic change;
    • leverage local assets through partnerships with other local ministries and organizations and invest their own time and financial resources in the ministry.
  • As a ministry of the church, ELCA World Hunger will prioritize ELCA congregations in the award process.
  • Organizations that discriminate among guests and neighbors, require participation in faith-related activities as a prerequisite for services or apply as “pass-through” organizations will not be considered for funding.


What you need to apply

  • To apply, you will need to answer the following questions:
    • What systemic issues are being addressed in the communities served?
    • How does your organization or project plan to address systemic issues in the communities served?
    • Who are the participants?
    • What is the total amount you are requesting?
    • Is this a single year or a multi-year request?
    • Is this request part of an existing organization or ministry or a new ministry or organization?
    • Is the organization or ministry directly implementing or is it in partnership with other entities?
  • To apply, please fill out our Letter of Inquiry form linked below under the “Apply” section beginning May 1, 2024.


If invited to complete a full grant application in ELCA GrantMaker, you will need:

  • Your organization’s contact and tax identification information. If awarded a grant, you will be required to provide a current letter verifying your organization’s 501(c)(3) status.
  • The current budget for your organization and the projected budget for the ministry described in your application.
  • A personal testimonial from a stakeholder in your project or ministry who has lived experience of poverty or hunger, describing the ministry's impact and importance for them and/or their community - in their own words.
  • A letter of support, from rostered or lay leadership of an ELCA congregation, that illustrates the relationship between the ministry and the congregation. How does the ministry’s relationship with the congregation nurture life-changing relationships with God, one another and the world? If the applicant is an ELCA congregation itself, the letter can come from its own leadership.
    • All documents included with your application must be PDFs.


Application Timeline

  • Letter of inquiry form open: May 1–June 16, 2024
  • Letter of inquiry review: June 17–August 4, 2024
  • Response to the letter of inquiry (decline or accept): August 23, 2024
  • Invited applicants to complete grant application in ELCA GrantMaker: August–September 2024
  • Review and communication between ELCA World Hunger staff and grant applicants on proposal: August–October 2024
  • Award notifications shared with applicants: November 2024
  • 2025 Domestic Hunger Grants start date: March 2025






Learn More

To learn more about Domestic Hunger Grants, click on the links below for a guide to the letter of inquiry process and to a sample letter of inquiry form to view the questions ahead of time.

In English:


En Español:



Contact us

ELCA World Hunger

8765 West Higgins Rd, Chicago, IL, 60631

800-638-3522 ext. 2616