The Northland Foundation staff and our many community and funding partners worked hard this past fiscal year to deliver critical resources and support the seeds of growth in communities throughout our region. Following are some of the highlights from July 1, 2020 through June 30, 2021.

Overall Organization

Grant Program

  • Made a record 644 grants totaling over $7.5 million to benefit the people and communities of the region.
  • Disbursed over $4.6 million in grants dedicated directly to COVID relief efforts in northeastern Minnesota, $3.8 million of which went to Small Business Relief Grant recipients.
  • Advanced the work of our Integrated Rural Community Aging Program to help older adults and family caregivers, investing $1.6 million in funding and technical support for regional partners in the areas of Community Planning and Care Integration, AGE to age/Social Connectedness, and Quality of Care/Workforce.

Use the drop-down to view non-COVID related grants awarded between July 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021. COVID-19 response grants may be viewed here.

Business Services

  • Received grants for loan capital to help start and sustain businesses including $2.3 million from the CDFI Fund and Rapid Response Program.
  • Supported 9 Northland SBDC consultants to serve 1,049 clients, assist with 51 start-ups, and help clients earn $16.3 million in business capital.
  • Closed loans to help finance 4 new businesses and 5 expansions in northeastern Minnesota.
Total Loans

0 Business Loans

(4 Start-ups, 5 Expansions)
Dollar Total


Dollars Leveraged


Use the drop-down to view loans closed July 1, 2020, through June 30, 2021.


  • Administered $2.3 million in Minnesota Department of Education Early Learning Scholarships to help families of young children afford high-quality early care and education.
  • Delivered the KIDS PLUS Youth In Philanthropy Program, a grantmaking board of five adult mentors and 15 high school students who awarded 15 grants totaling $14,610 to support youth-led projects, with funding support from our Emeritus Trustee Group.
  • Completed the Twin Ports Youth Leadership Academy service project, which had been cut short in March 2020 due to the pandemic. All 12 adult mentors and 32 of the youth leaders reconnected in the fall to implement the project.
  • Supported intergenerational programming in 18 AGE to age sites in our region to reduce social isolation while maintaining health and safety. Sites reported engaging a total of 9,100 youth, older adults, and ages-in-between last year.
  • Hosted 46 virtual trainings to help 875 participating child care providers enhance program quality and achieve their Parent Aware Star Rating.
  • Provided 34 virtual trainings and learning community meetings for 1,637 service providers working with young children and families, through our Thrive and Early Childhood Initiatives, to share strategies to foster resiliency and social-emotional wellbeing.