The Lowe’s chain of home improvement superstores has a 65 year history of giving back to the communities where it operates its locations. Over the last decade it has offered a school improvement grant program called Toolbox for Education. To date, it has awarded over $35 million to 8,000 schools and counting across the United States providing money for school improvement projects.
Each school selected for a grant will receive between $2,000 and $5,000 dollars to fund the school’s project. Money can be used for any type of school improvement that strengthens the school and the community it calls home. Your proposal should explain how your school will use the grant and explain any value it brings to the Lowe’s brand. Some examples of the types of things Toolbox for Education grants typically fund are landscaping projects, nature trails, parent centers, peer tutoring workstations, physical fitness areas, playgrounds, reading gardens, school gardens and student art kiosks.
Your school’s project should be completed within one year of receiving funding. You are not required to use Lowe’s products or materials but in most cases Lowe’s can easily furnish you with the necessary supplies. And depending on your local store’s volunteer program, employees may be available to donate time and labor to help pull off your plans. Check with your local Lowe’s manager if you are selected for a Toolbox for Education grant to inquire about individual store volunteer involvement.
Toolbox for Education is run by the Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation. The foundation accepts applications for school grants twice a year. The deadlines are February 15 and October 15, each year, or until a total of 1,500 applications are received. The grant is open to both schools and parent groups such as a PTA as long as the parent group has 501c3 status. The application process is fairly simple and can be accomplished fairly quickly online. To apply on behalf of your school, file your application on the Toolbox for Education website. If you are not selected for a school improvement grant on your first attempt, you can file again during the next grant cycle.
If you have any further questions about this Lowe’s program, contact your local store or consult the Toolbox for Education FAQ on the grant program website.