Program Highlights 2022-2023

Over the past year, the Northland Foundation staff and numerous funding and community partners provided critical resources and support to people and communities throughout our region. Following are some of the highlights from July 1, 2022, through June 30, 2023.

Overall Organization

  • Raised and managed $10.6 million – 91% from outside the region – to fund grantmaking, business services, programming, and special initiatives. See a Funding Snapshot for more details.
  • Received nearly $1.1 million in multi-year grants from Minnesota-based philanthropic partners to advance economic equity and inclusion through the Northland Foundation’s business services, grantmaking, and programs.
  • Refreshed our mission statement and values to reflect our focus on building belonging in our region along geographic, racial, and socio-economic lines.
  • Awarded $323,000 in grants to organizations led by Black, Indigenous, and people of color, and $57,310 to 23 Indigenous individuals through the Maada’ookiing program.

Grant Program

  • Made 172 grants totaling over $3.7 million to benefit people and communities in the region, including 7 grants totaling $195,000 within the new grant priority of Belonging.
  • Made $443,600 in child care grants to 8 center-based and 10 family licensed programs, to create or retain 425 child care slots in partnership with the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development and St. Louis County.
  • Completed year two of the Maada’ookiing program and awarded 23 grants totaling $57,310 to American Indian individuals in the region for projects that strengthen community, culture, and regional capacity, as recommended by the Indigenous Advisory Board.
  • Awarded a total of $300,000 in Systems Change grants to two organizations seeking not only to provide services but also disrupt inequities and promote fairness within the procedures, processes, and distribution of resources.

View Grants

Use the drop-down to view grants awarded between July 1, 2022, and June 30, 2023.

  • Basic Needs 39 grants - $1,402,000
  • Belonging 7 grants - $195,000
  • Domestic Violence/Abuse 6 grants - $271,000
  • Early Care & Education 51 grants - $738,100
  • Economic Development/Other Critical Needs 16 grants - $631,673
  • Maada’ookiing 23 grants - $57,310
  • Out-Of-School Time 16 Grants - $445,500
  • Youth In Philanthropy 14 Grants - $12,767

Business Services

  • Closed 14 loans totaling $2,090,000 to help finance 7 business expansions and 7 start-ups/ownership transitions in northeast Minnesota.
  • Provided technical assistance and awarded grants of up to $15,000 to 4 manufacturing small businesses located on the Iron Range for technology improvements and equipment purchases in partnership with the Minnesota Department of Iron Range Resources and Rehabilitation.
  • Hosted the Northland Small Business Development Center (SBDC) with support from regional and state partners, working with a team of 16 consultants who clocked 5,050 hours serving 905 small business clients in northeast Minnesota.
  • Received the Small Business Administration’s 2023 Small Business Development Center Excellence and Innovation Center Award, out of 121 SBDCs in the SBA Great Lakes Region V of Minnesota, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, and Wisconsin.
  • Became a trustee with crowdfunding organization, Kiva, to help borrowers who typically have a harder time accessing capital to get small business loans of $1,000 - $15,000.
  • Raised over $3.4 million for loan capital, grants, and technical assistance for small businesses in our region, including $933,696 lent through participation in the CDFI’s Equitable Recovery Program.

View Loans

Use the drop-down to view loans closed July 1, 2022, through June 30, 2023.

Total Loans

1 Business Loans

(7 start-ups, 7 expansions)

Dollar Total


Dollars Leveraged


Jobs Created/Retained



  • Administered nearly $2.5 million in Minnesota Department of Education Early Learning Scholarships to help families of young children afford high-quality early care and education.
  • Encouraged young people’s involvement in philanthropy and community service: the Youth In Philanthropy advisory board of 14 students and 5 adult mentors awarded $12,760 in grants to 14 youth-developed projects.
  • Expanded the AGE to age Program with AmeriCorps Seniors Demonstration Grant support, successfully engaging 300 older adult volunteers to provide learning activities for 2,638 students in 12 rural AGE to age sites.
  • Worked with 10 partner sites to offer outreach and activities to Family, Friend, and Neighbor (FFN) caregivers of young children, providing 82 Play & Learns for 1,038 adults and 1,500 children.
  • Hosted 46 virtual trainings to help 875 participating child care providers enhance program quality and achieve their Parent Aware Star Rating.
  • Provided 42 professional development trainings for 912 child care providers, and assisted 31 licensed child care programs with financial incentives, to support them with Parent Aware quality ratings.
  • Launched the Northeast Minnesota Child Care Workforce Solutions Pilot Project, which provided 47 licensed child care programs with a total of $334,560 toward staff recruitment and retention efforts with funding from the City of Duluth 1200 Fund, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota Foundation, and Northland Foundation.