To apply for a grant:
Ensure you're eligible. Read more about what we fund and don’t fund before you apply.
Submit a letter of inquiry. Before you dedicate time to generate a large application, a letter of inquiry allows us to give you preliminary feedback concerning your request and its potential fit within our funding priorities. Please allow our program officers 30 days to respond to letters of inquiry.
Start your proposal. Once you are ready to apply, see our Application Procedures page for a full list of the documents you will need to include in your application.
The Board of Directors meets quarterly to consider requests for grants. These meetings are held in February, May, August and November.
In each of those meetings, the Foundation will review applications in three of the four program areas on a rotating basis; one program each cycle will not review applications. Please see our deadline dates of proposal review cycles by program.
We must receive your proposal by 5 p.m. on the deadline date in order to review it at the corresponding board meeting. In the event that a deadline falls on a weekend or holiday, requests may be submitted by 5 p.m. on the following business day.
Recently, the Fry Foundation transitioned to a new online grants system, SmartSimple.
To submit a proposal or letter of inquiry please use our system to complete the following steps:
An organization must provide a Federal Employer Identification Number (EIN) to confirm they are a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) organization.
Account Log In Portal — Use this link to log in to the system.
For first-time users of the SmartSimple System, who have submitted an application to the Fry Foundation before, click “Forgot Password” to check if an account has been enabled.
Enter the email address used for the prior application and click “Submit”. Wait 10 minutes to check for an email with a Subject Line “Lloyd A. Fry Foundation Password Reset Request”.
If you have NOT received the Password Reset Email, return to the portal link and click “Register” to create an account.
To begin either a proposal or letter of inquiry application click “Program Areas” to start a new application.
If you have started an application, click “Applications” to return to a saved proposal or letter of inquiry and continue the submission process.
If applicants are unable to access the online grants system, proposals and letters of inquiry may be submitted by email to or by postal service to the address below, however, the process may take longer.
Ms. Unmi Song
Lloyd A. Fry Foundation
120 S. LaSalle Street, Suite 1950
Chicago, IL 60603-3419
If you do not receive an acknowledgement of receipt of your letter of inquiry within 30 days or an acknowledgement of your proposal within one week, please contact the Foundation at 312-580-0310 to confirm that your letter or proposal was received.