The William S. Abell Foundation supports qualified, tax-exempt organizations, regardless of religion or affiliation, providing aid to people in need in Washington, D.C. and nearby Maryland counties.

Our Core Mission: The Foundation primarily awards grants quarterly to help the hungry, *people with intellectual disabilities, homeless, abused women and children, and to assist at-risk pregnant women in delivering and caring for their infants. Grants typically do not exceed $25,000.

* The William S. Abell Foundation funds programs for people with intellectual disabilities only, and not for persons with other developmental disabilities. "The American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities has substituted the term intellectual disability as a narrow definition of mental retardation. This disability is characterized by 1) intellectual functioning level (IQ) below 70-75; 2) significant limitations in conceptual, social and practical adaptive skills; 3) a disability originating before the age of 18".

Additionally, the Foundation makes grants through our Margaret Abell Powell Fund for classical ballet and traditional theater.


STEP ONE: Review Requirements & Deadlines.

STEP TWO: You must receive an invitation to apply. If you are a new applicant, please call our office after you review our website. If you are a previous grantee that submitted a final report and did not receive funding last year, please call our office.

STEP THREE: If you are eligible, you will be asked to submit a letter of intent on PhilanTrack. Please be sure to include the following three documents along with your letter of intent: 

  • Signed Abortion Counseling Disclosure Statement
  • Your grant budget (an itemization of how you plan to spend all the grant funds).
  • A copy of your 501 (c)(3) letter that states you are a 509 (a) (1) or a 509 (a) (2).  

STEP FOUR: If your letter of intent is approved, you will be invited to submit a proposal on PhilanTrack. Please review our proposal checklist.

Our funding cycle is now open until April 1, 2015.