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For years, the Iowa West Foundation has been known as a “grantmaking” organization. However, we also invest in initiatives. Are you aware of the differences between the two? Learn more.

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Since its inception, the Iowa West Foundation's grant program has awarded more than $400 million to improve the quality of life in our region. These stories highlight some of these grants and show the impact they make on our community. 

Recent Featured Grants

Community Studies

Community studies help organizations and the Iowa West Foundation determine which programs and projects meet community needs. Foundation advisory committees refer to these studies to inform and guide our decision-making processes.

Bluffs Tomorrow 2030

On August 20, 2014, the final draft of a new community study coordinated by the City of Council Bluffs’ Community Development Department was released. It was shared at a public hearing to gather additional input from citizens prior to becoming final. You may view the report at www.bluffstomorrow2030.com.

United Way of the Midlands Community Assessment 2013–2014

To gain a better understanding of the challenges currently facing our most vulnerable neighbors, United Way of the Midlands (UMW) partnered with the Iowa West Foundation, Omaha Community Foundation and with the support of the ConAgra Foods Foundation to conduct a comprehensive community assessment in Douglas, Sarpy and Pottawattamie counties. In total, nearly 4,700 community members participated in various portions of the study, resulting in collection of qualitative and quantitative data through surveys, focus groups and interactive world café discussions.

Read the Community Assessment Executive Summary

Visit the United Way of the Midlands site for the full report

Strategic Plan Executive Summary

After nearly a year of unprecedented, broad-based community outreach, Iowa West Foundation officials have identified three areas on which they will focus over the next three to five years in the effort to make a significant impact on the toward our vision.

Strategic Plan Executive Summary

Community Outreach & Resulting Input Themes

Extensive community input, including leadership interviews, community surveys, listening sessions, and focus groups resulted in 15 input themes.

Outreach & Input Themes

Sustaining Structures for Arts and Culture Recommendations

An independent study of the local cultural arts sector — including recommendations to strengthen, sustain and stabilize that sector — was conducted by Louise Stevens, founder of ArtsMarket and who has written more than 150 cultural plans for cities and counties in the United States and Canada.

ArtsMarket Report, August 2013

2013 Community Input for Strategic Planning

Focus Groups Executive Summary
Housing
Human and Social Needs
Latino Leadership
Leadership
Seniors
Service Clubs

Pottawattamie County Needs Assessment

An independent, county-wide community needs assessment in late 2007 was integral in the launching many Iowa West Foundation programs over the past five years. 

2007 Needs Assessment Executive Summary
2007 Needs Assessment Final Report

Check back later for information on community needs input being gathered for 2013. 

Grantee Perception Survey

In 2012, a study was conducted with recent and current grant recipients on the grant process. Click the links below to see the results.

Grantee Perception Survey - Cover Letter
Grantee Perception Survey - Report 

Youth Assessment

In 2011, Iowa West Foundation commissioned a 12-question survey targeting the youth of Pottawattamie County to determine their needs and priorities.

Click here to read the full report.

Recreational Study

In 2011, Iowa West Foundation commissioned a county wide needs assessment on Parks, Recreation and Related Leisure Facilities. A brief overview of essential findings can be found in CEO Pete Tulipana’s letter.  For more details, you can read the full report.

Recreational Study – Cover Letter 
Recreational Study – Report

OUR VISION is a community where families choose to
live, and businesses choose to locate, because of its
quality of life and standard of living.

Iowa West Foundation    |    25 Main Place, Suite 550    |    Council Bluffs, Iowa    |    712-309-3000