(ACTIVE) John F. Wegman Fund

Categories: Aging, Labor / Management Relations, Youth


Concerns of the elderly, character-building opportunities for youth, and improved labor/management relations through education or other means.

Established in 1953 by John F. Wegman’s will, this fund addresses “charitable and philanthropic and educational purposes which will make for the welfare of the Rochester and Monroe County community … particularly giving assistance in the case of the aged, whether institutionalized or not, and to character building agencies … and in developing through educational work and otherwise, better relationships between capital and labor.”

Since 1964, the John F. Wegman Fund has focused on “new or experimental programs for a limited period of time.” Membership of the committee established by the will includes members of the Jewish, Catholic, and Protestant faith communities, the United Way of Greater Rochester, and organized labor.

The John F. Wegman Fund is not affiliated with the Wegmans stores or with the Wegman Family Charitable Foundation.

Typical Grant Size

These grants range from $1,500 to $10,000, with a median size of $7,300.

Eligibility Criteria

Applicants must be 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations serving Monroe County, NY.  The John F. Wegman Advisory Committee will consider new requests from previously funded organizations after the final report has been submitted and 18 months have passed since they were last funded.

Funding Criteria

The John F. Wegman Fund has limited resources and looks for opportunities to provide small amounts of money that significantly impact community-based programs. Most awards are one-time grants for specific, participant-driven projects. The grant preference is for agencies, projects, and programs that are:

  • Small scale
  • Start-up
  • Innovative (develop or adapt new strategies)
  • Participant-driven (based on identified needs of beneficiaries)

Examples of recent awards:

  • Concerns of the elderly: Funding to support affordable transportation for seniors to health-related appointments.
  • Character-building opportunities for youth: Funding to empower at-risk youth through workplace skill development and educating students in a supportive, multi-sensory learning environment so that they all become successful learners.
  • Improved labor/management relations: Funding the republishing of the book All These Years of Effort, to more accurately portray the history of Rochester’s central labor unions.

Proscribed Funding

The John F. Wegman Fund does not provide support for:

  • Annual giving campaigns
  • Capital building
  • Fellowships
  • Individuals
  • Operating deficits
  • Political campaigns
  • Religious activities

The John F. Wegman Fund gives limited consideration to:

  • Land acquisition
  • Renewable grants
  • Staff training

Application Due Date(s)

The upcoming deadline to submit an application is 4 p.m. on Friday, May 3, 2024.

Future opportunities will be announced in our quarterly e-newsletter, Grant Opportunities. (Click to subscribe.)


To begin a new application or return to your account, click here.

For assistance accessing the application, please contact grants@racf.org or call 585.341.4374.

For reference only, please see the sample application form.

Notification Date(s)

Applications will be considered by the John F. Wegman Fund Advisory Committee over four cycles annually. The grantmaking process is as follows:

  • Applications are due in January, May, August, and November.
  • The Advisory Committee screens applications and conducts site visits for selected applicants.
  • The Advisory Committee reviews applications and site visit reports and makes funding recommendations.
  • The Advisory Committee’s funding recommendations are acted upon by the Community Foundation’s Board of Directors.
  • The Community Foundation announces decisions and notifies applicants.
Screening &
Review Period


Sara Bukowiec
Program Officer, Community Programs
Rochester Area Community Foundation
500 East Avenue
Rochester, NY 14607-1912

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