The Foundation awards grants through an annual application process through which nonprofit 501(c)(3) organizations located in Union Pacific communities may apply. Applications are accepted only through the online process. Copies of the application mailed to the Foundation will be returned. The Foundation does not provide leadership gifts or support requests for which it is asked to be the sole funder. An organization is allowed to complete only one application for only one program/project during the open application process. Applications undergo a competitive review process. A Foundation invitation to submit an application in no way guarantees funding of that request. The Foundation receives a multitude of grant requests for worthwhile projects every year.In a typical year, we are able to provide some level of funding to about 50% of the requests. The volume of funding requests received also precludes providing individual critiques of unsuccessful requests.


The Foundation requires that an organization be located in a community served by Union Pacific Railroad, is a 501(c)(3) public charity as identified by the IRS, or Municipality, and falls within one of the two areas of interest outlined below.

1.Union Pacific Community: The community where the organization is based must be served by Union Pacific Railroad. (View a map showing where Union Pacific Railroad operates in the United States.) Your community must be located on or be reasonably close to these railroad lines. The Foundation does not accept applications from organizations located outside the Union Pacific served area even though the intent may be to operate a program in a Union Pacific community or county.

2.Public Charity or Municipality: The organization must have a current 501(c)(3) public charity status and further, be classified as an organization described in sections 509(a)(1) or 509(a)(2) under 170(b)(1)(A)(vii) of the Internal Revenue Code. Applications will not be accepted from private foundations or a disqualified supporting organization with the meaning of section 4966(d)(4) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended (the "Code"). Municipalities located on Union Pacific rail lines may apply for programs/projects that benefit the entire community and that are not funded by property tax funds.

3.Areas of Interest: The Foundation has a strong interest in promoting program effectiveness among nonprofits. To that end, the Foundation will dedicate the majority of these grants to help nonprofit organizations build their capacity by helping new or existing programs reach more people or reach them more effectively. The Foundation will be particularly receptive to proposals that fall within the following categories:

4.Community and Civic: To assist community-based organizations and related activities that improve and enrich the general quality of life in the community. This category includes organizations such as aquariums, botanical gardens, children's museums, history/science museums, public libraries, public television and radio, zoos, etc.

5. Health and Human Services: To assist organizations dedicated to improving the level of health care and providing human services in the community. Local affiliates of national health organizations may apply for local programs only, but not for general operating support.

How to Apply

Union Pacific Foundation will accept only online applications through the two-stage process outlined below. Printed copies of the application are not available and will not be accepted.

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May 1, 2014 2015 open application process begins

August 15, 2014 2015 full applications must be submitted online by midnight CDT

February 2015 Applicants notified of grant status

May 1, 2015 2016 open application process begins

August 15, 2015 2016 full applications must be submitted online by midnight CDT

February 2016 Applicants notified of grant status




Union Pacific Foundation

1400 Douglas Street, Stop 1560

Omaha, NE 68179

Telephone: (402) 544-5600