Blandin Foundation partners with community-focused organizations throughout rural Minnesota, especially in the Grand Rapids area, to foster resilient, vibrant rural communities. In addition to addressing public policy issues, providing scholarships, training community leaders and engaging communities around issues and opportunities, the Foundation supports these partnerships through grants of money generated by the trust of Charles K. Blandin.
Since Mr. Blandin's first grant of $600 for a community park in 1943, the Blandin Foundation has approved 8,000 grants totalling $365 million.
We look for work that adapts systems, addresses barriers, supports new and emerging leaders, and builds models that other communities can emulate.
If this sounds like your organization or project, let's talk! Start by visiting the "About" tab for details on what's eligible, Foundation focus areas, and tips for our application process.
Thank you for everything you do to build a vibrant rural Minnesota! We look forward to learning more about your work.
If you are an Itasca area student age 25 or younger, you might be interested in our Education Grants program.
Top Three Vibrant Communities | August 8 â€“ 12
Summertime in rural Minnesota is filled with family, friends, food and festivals. For kids, hot August afternoons are held on to tighter than ski ropes—for these are the waning moments before the school year. For hunters, the cool mornings point to waterfowl, upland birds and the ever-elusive whitetail. Teachers are sneaking back into their classrooms to […]
Top Three Vibrant Communities | August 1 â€“ 5
1.) Grand Rapids: As communities across the country grapple with how to address issues of mental health, Grand Rapids moves forward in its own quest. The Kiesler Wellness Center broke ground this week—right on schedule. The $4.4 million project will be an educational support center for community members and families seeking ways to access mental health […]
Top Three Vibrant Communities | July 25 â€“ 29
1.) Ely: Vibrancy on the Iron Range a half-century ago was as plentiful as dandelions in June. Mining was booming and small businesses were popping up in the form of Ma’ and Pa’ shops and single screen movie theaters. Today, as many rural communities in Minnesota are realizing Strong Towns assessment on the ills of “big box” economy, the […]