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Milwaukee Irish Fest Foundation


Foundation Mission

The Milwaukee Irish Fest Foundation was formed in 1994 to advance the charitable and educational purposes for which Irish Festivals, Inc. was originally formed.

Grants are made to projects or for purposes consistent with the Foundation's priorities, and only to non-profit organizations that meet federal and state requirements for tax-exempt status. Grants may not be made to individuals. The Foundation does not commit to multiple-year projects, although applications for ongoing support or new projects may be reviewed and granted on an annual basis.

Since its creation, the Irish Fest Foundation has granted more than $600,000 to non-profit entities in Ireland, Northern Ireland, Canada and throughout the United States. Grants have reflected the priorities of the Foundation, with special grants given for catastrophic events.

Foundation Grants and Requests

The Milwaukee Irish Fest Foundation awards grants based on earnings from its investments. The three areas of priority are cultural, educational and civic/community:

  • - Initiatives that support excellence and innovation in Irish music, drama, arts and culture
  • - Special needs of the Irish and Irish American communities
  • - Special needs of the Milwaukee metropolitan community which provide support for children, the elderly, the disadvantaged or people with developmental disabilities
  • - Programs and activities that promote the development of community leadership, volunteerism and service
  • - Other initiatives that support the charitable and educational purposes of Irish Festivals, Inc.

In 2012, a designated fund was established in memory of Chuck Ward, a key figure in the Milwaukee Irish Fest family. Funds donated to the Chuck Ward Fund are separated, and the earnings will be used for community and civic purposes in the Greater Milwaukee area.


The Board of Directors of the Foundation acknowledges and thanks Irish Festivals, Inc. for its continuing support, which allows the Foundation to support projects and organizations in the Milwaukee area and beyond to further their perpetuation of Irish culture, music, education and charitable services.

Applications & Questions

Please refer to Grant Guidelines for instructions to apply for grants.


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