Looking to nominate a Community First Grant partner and not sure what to say? Copy and paste the email template below, edit it with your information and to your voice, then send to potential partners to make sure they would like to participate.



My name is [insert name] and I am a Whole Foods Market Team Member at the [insert store name/details]. I’d like to share an exciting opportunity.

Whole Cities Foundation, a nonprofit established by Whole Foods Market, has a Community First Grant (CFG) Program that supports nonprofits focused on long-term fresh, healthy food access and nutrition education that are engaged with Whole Foods Market Team Members. This includes projects such as community gardens, mobile markets, healthy cooking classes and more. Whole Cities provides the grants ($9,000 USD or $12,000 CAD), and Team Members commit to volunteering at least once a quarter for a year.

For the 2023-2024 CFG program, Whole Foods Market Team Members can nominate an organization between May 4-June 15. Eligible organizations will be invited to apply in August and grantees will be announced in November.

Below are the eligibility criteria and participation requirements for community partners that must be met in order to be eligible to apply for the grant. If this opportunity is a good fit for [insert organization name], I would like to submit a nomination for your organization.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Projects that will broaden long-term access to fresh, healthy food and/or nutrition education. The Community First Grant will not be a good fit for food pantries, food banks, and other food donation/redistribution programs.
  • US: Must be a 501(c)3 nonprofit and organizations partnered with a 501(c)3 nonprofit. Canada: Must be a Registered Charity or partnered with a Registered Charity.
  • Locally led organizations (Not all Team Members, board members, and volunteers must be residents of the community served, but robust community representation is important).
  • Organizations with strong community engagement that request and use feedback from their community.
  • Programs focused on serving adults and/or older youth (ages 16-22). The Community First Grant will not be the best fit for community partners that focus primarily on children or schools. Visit our sister foundation, Whole Kids, to learn more about their grant programs.

Participation Requirements

  • Complete an online grant application. The application will include questions regarding the organization’s work, leadership, impact, community engagement, long-term plans, and finances.
  • Submit one required final report.
  • Allow me (and perhaps other WFM Team Members) to volunteer at least once per quarter between August 2023-July 2024.

If you are interested, here are the next steps:

  • Nomination: I will get approval from my Store Team Leader (store manager) and submit the nomination by June 15.
  • Volunteering: We can make a plan for my volunteer service that meets your goals.
  • Application: If the nomination is successful, Whole Cities will invite you to apply in mid-August. All applicants will be notified in November.


You can find more information about the program here.

Please just let me know if you have any questions.



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