Community Sharing Fund

Meeting our community's urgent needs

Grants that change lives

The Community Sharing Fund is how the Saint Paul & Minnesota Foundations respond to emergency needs in our community. Minnesota Compass reports 10 percent of Minnesotans living in poverty, leaving many people unprepared to weather unexpected medical bills or job losses.

The Community Sharing Fund provides a rapid response lifeline, and is one of the only resources in the state that can help organizations respond to immediate needs of individuals. A small grant from the fund can prevent a tailspin that results in unemployment or homelessness.

To learn more about the Community Sharing Fund, contact Arbadella Williams at 651.325.4260, ext. 4. 

Bringing community together

Apply for a grant

Nonprofit organizations assisting residents in Dakota, Ramsey or Washington counties can apply for a grant from the Community Sharing Fund.

Apply for a grant

Make a donation

You can support this lifeline for Minnesotans by making a donation to the Community Sharing Fund. 

Donate now

How Community Sharing Fund makes a difference

The Fund partners with more than 100 community organizations to identify families and individuals facing short-term financial setbacks. More than half of the Fund’s clients are single parents. They tend to be employed, though they live paycheck to paycheck and lack adequate savings for financial crises.

Since 1980, the Fund has provided upwards of 25,000 grants (an average of 1,700 per year) and has assisted a total of 60,000 people. It is a unique way for donors to have an immediate and direct impact that helps stabilize a person’s life.

Community Sharing Fund is an emergency grant program funded by philanthropic dollars that provides assistance to individuals – a unique type of fund within the region and the state. The Foundations underwrite the cost of all staff time associated with Community Sharing Fund. One-hundred percent of outside foundation and individual support goes directly to the emergency grant pool and is distributed to individuals in need.


The role of the Saint Paul & Minnesota Foundations

Community Sharing Fund is a program of the Saint Paul & Minnesota Foundations.

Corporate, foundation and other funding support comes from The Katherine B. Andersen Fund, F. R. Bigelow Foundation, The Patrick and Aimee Butler Family Foundation, Buuck Family Foundation, The Dawkins Family Fund, Delta Dental, Ecolab Foundation, Edelstein Family Foundation, Emergency Food and Shelter Program, Donald and Patricia Garofalo, Hardenbergh Foundation, The John and Ruth Huss Fund, Imation, Mardag Foundation, Harold C. Meissner Fund, Otto Bremer Trust, Ramsey County Community Human Services, Securian Foundation, Ted and Ginnie Taylor Family Fund, The Paul Verret Community Sharing Fund Endowment and many individual supporters.

2017 By the Numbers


Total granted into the community


Number of families served


Average grant amount


Grantseeker user guide and FAQs

Find application FAQs and instructions on how to access and use the grantee portal..

PDF File
Application guidelines

View our Community Sharing Fund application guidelines.

PDF File

East Metro Financial Network

The East Metro Financial Network meets four times a year to inform case managers and social workers about community resources that may be beneficial and interesting to them and their work.

Each meeting features a speaker, an update about Community Sharing Fund and an opportunity for attendees to make announcements about relevant programs, events or resources. 

Upcoming meetings of the East Metro Financial Network:


February 28, 2019

April 25, 2019

September 19, 2019

November 21, 2019

Time: 1:30 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Location: Community Action Partnership of Ramsey and Washington Counties (Wellstone Room)

450 Syndicate Street North, Saint Paul, MN 55104 (Free Parking)

Support Minnesotans in need

Your donations can directly benefit Minnesotans facing a financial crisis. Help them get back on their feet by making a contribution to the Community Sharing Fund.