Social Innovation Investments

Photo by <a href="">Kvalifik</a> on <a href="">Unsplash</a>

Cedar Valley United Way has social innovation investment funds available to support new, innovative and collaborative efforts that address the root causes of health and human needs issues that contribute to the cycle of poverty in the Cedar Valley.

The social innovation category was created in response to a community needs assessment United Way commissioned. These investments may take place outside of the traditional two-year funding cycle for education, income and health grants, with the intent to encourage holistic approaches to impacting the identified critical root issues.    

Funding is limited and will be awarded for projects/programs according to the following criteria*:

  • Must receive invitation from Cedar Valley United Way to submit proposal
  • Must involve a meeting with collaborative partners involved and Cedar Valley United Way prior to written proposal in order to obtain invitation
  • Must address a demonstrated root community issue in health and human services
  • Must demonstrate a collaboration of community partners
  • Must seek desired outcomes with measurable results, or if research focused, exhibit what will be learned and how the group intends to respond to that learning
  • Must impact residents living within a 30-mile radius of Waterloo
  • Must maintain 501(c)(3) status, or if not a 501(c)(3), must have a fiscal sponsor with the status

For more information, contact Nilvia Reyes Rodriguez at or 319-235-6211 ext. 18

*Please note: Cedar Valley United Way does not support capital assets with our Social Innovation Grants. Applications for 2024 will not be accepted February through May.

Below are the programs receiving grant funding in the area of Social Innovation:


Road Home Re-Entry Program | $20,000


WeCan! Parent Partner Project | $15,000