The Community First Grant Program supports nonprofits focused on long-term fresh, healthy food access and nutrition education that are engaged with Team Members. This includes community gardens, mobile markets, healthy cooking classes and more.

Since 2016, we have awarded 342 grants in 128 cities, investing over $2,203,000. Nearly 200 Team Members from 100 Whole Foods Market stores, 11 regional offices and our Global Support office have participated!

Check out our resources below for more info.

Community First Grant
Nomination Steps

Scroll to learn more and submit a nomination.

Step 1
Step 1

Interested Team Members complete a 10min training to make sure their nonprofit community partner is a good fit.

Step 2
Step 2

Get STL/FTL (store) or TL (office) approval to participate in the CFG program then have them submit a support form by June 15.

Step 3
Step 3

Submit your Team Member nomination from May 4 through June 15.

Note: Submittable does not support Internet Explorer. Please use Mozilla FireFox or Google Chrome for your application.

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CFG Resources

We typically receive a rush of questions in the last couple days of an open window and 90% of nominations on the last day. Don’t wait! The earlier you ask your questions and start your nomination form, the less stressful the process will be.

Get prepared by viewing a sample Team Member nomination form here and a community partner sample application here. Make sure to check out the CFG FAQ here

If you have additional questions, email our team at


Download and print an 8.5″x11″ event poster here to hang by time clocks, in break rooms and to post in logbooks. If you cannot attend a live option, recordings will be listed below after the live event. 

Get Started 

Learn about the CFG program, the types of community partners and how to engage with a new potential partner.

Thursday, April 6 at 12pm PST | 1pm MST | 2pm CST | 3pm EST


Join the Whole Cities team to ask questions about the program, how to engage with a partner or about the nomination process. 

Thursday, May 11 at 12pm PST | 1pm MST | 2pm CST | 3pm EST

Help spread the word about the CFG! 

Download and print huddle topics:

Important Dates

April 6Getting Started Webinar
May 4Team Member Nominations Open
May 11CFG Q&A
June 15Team Member Nominations Close
STL Support Form Due
Mid-AugustEligible Orgs Invited to Apply
NovemberCFG Partners Announced
MW LXG Team Member Volunteers at CFG partner, Seedleaf

Team Member Eligibility

To nominate a community partner, you must:

  • Be a Whole Foods Market Team Member in good standing.
  • Ask your STL to complete an STL Support Form by June 15. If you’re an office TM please have your Team Leader complete the form and if you’re a Facilities TM, please have your FTL complete the form.
  • Be able to volunteer with your nonprofit community partner and must be done on personal time. No compensation will be provided from Whole Foods Market or Whole Cities Foundation.
  • Nominate a community partner willing to complete an online Community First Grant Program Application. The application will include questions regarding the organization’s work, leadership, impact, community engagement, long-term plans, and finances.
  • Nominate a community partner focused on expanding long-term fresh, healthy food access or offering healthy cooking classes. This grant will not be a good fit for food pantries, food banks, and other food donation/redistribution programs.
  • Nominate a community partner primarily focused on serving adults. 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. 
  • Be willing to submit a short mid-year and optional end-of-the-year update including a brief summary of how things are going and photos of your partnership in action.

Team Member Expectations

  • Submit one required update (optional end-of-the-year update) including a brief summary of how things are going and photos of your partnership in action. 
  • Volunteer Once per Quarter – From monthly days in a community garden to hosting a mobile market team in your store to talk about merchandising, this can take any shape that works for you partner and your store and keeps everyone safe in the process.   
  • Update your STL and Culture Champion Ambassador at least once per quarter.
  • Read monthly CFG updates (optional webinars). 

Additional Resources

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