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Community Engagement Manager
Carolyn Desrosiers


[email protected]

Mielke Family Foundation

Fostering education through improvements in health care, the arts and care for the young and aging.

Families of Funds


The Mielke Family Foundation existed as a private foundation before becoming a separately governed Supporting Organization within the Community Foundation in 1996. It seeks to encourage big ideas to improve education. Through education, the Mielke Family Foundation supports health care, the arts and care for the young and aging in the Appleton and Shawano area school districts. 

Education is not limited merely to schooling, but more broadly defined as follows:
“Education has to do with discovery – that learning of the culture, the meanings assigned, the rarefied techniques that have come out of life experiences of people. They seem to be just as important for human adaptation as these things that we have singled out in school to teach.” – Edmund Gordon

What We Fund

Applications begin with an inquiry. A successful initiative will be able to answer the following questions:

  • What aspect of this initiative is educational?
  • How does this initiative address the focus areas of health, arts, children & youth, or aging?
  • Who are you partnering or collaborating with to implement this initiative?
  • How will this “big idea” have an impact in the community?

Range of grantmaking: Unspecified

Deadline: The Mielke Family Foundation considers proposals each year in the spring and fall.

  • Spring Cycle: Inquiry deadline Feb. 1, Decisions by mid-May.
  • Fall Cycle- Inquiry deadline Aug. 1, Decisions by mid-November

What We Don't Fund

  • Initiatives that don’t serve the communities of Appleton and/or Shawano. If your nonprofit organization is physically located outside of the Appleton or Shawano area school districts, you will be required to submit a letter of support from a collaborating organization within one of these areas.   
  • General operating support for existing programs
  • Bricks & mortar projects are typically not funded

To Apply

1. Read the Community Foundation’s general grant policies.

2. If you feel you have an idea that fits the Mielke Family Foundation's focus, submit an inquiry in our online grant portal. Registration is required and can take up to two business days. Under the heading “GRANT APPLICANT” select “AVAILABLE GRANTS” and look for 'Mielke Family Foundation'.

3. If you would like to discuss your idea prior to submitting an inquiry or have questions, contact:

Carolyn Desrosiers 
Community Engagement Manager
[email protected]