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Grant Guidelines

Funding Guidelines and Restrictions

Grant Guidelines

Morgan Stanley's commitment to making a positive contribution to society is a direct reflection of the Firm's core values.  The Morgan Stanley Foundation has been supporting communities and the charities our employees engage with well over 50 years. Our efforts are fourfold:

  • Encourage, recognize and reward employee volunteer efforts
  • Give children a healthy start through the Morgan Stanley Global Alliance for Children’s Health
  • Invest in students to create access and opportunity in the financial services sector for members of diverse and underserved communities
  • Support the Firm’s response to natural disasters and other tragedies

In total, Morgan Stanley's worldwide philanthropy provided over 100 million to nonprofit organizations last year.  The overview below provides a description of our US programs, as well as specific information regarding funding requests and associated requirements and restrictions.

Overview of Programs


To encourage employee volunteering, Morgan Stanley offers a suite of engagement opportunities for our employees.  Our programs facilitate team and individual engagement through Global Volunteer Month, held each June, as well as our Year-Round Volunteer Program, which connects employees throughout the year to strategic nonprofit Firm partners.  

We are dedicated to making a lasting impact on our communities with our strongest asset – our talent.  Through our annual Morgan Stanley Strategy Challenge, we create teams of Morgan Stanley employees who work with nonprofits over an eight-week period to analyze and solve an important strategic issue for the organization.   Since its inception, the program has delivered actionable strategic plans to more than 100 charities and delivered more than $10 million in pro bono service hours. 

Volunteer Incentive Program

In addition to Firm-sponsored opportunities, the Morgan Stanley Foundation recognizes and supports employee volunteer efforts and fosters relationships with our local communities by offering grants through the Volunteer Incentive Program (“VIP”).  The VIP supports local health and social service charities and programs where Firm employees are directly engaged through financial grants ranging in size from $500 to $2,000.  Applications for VIP grants must be initiated by the employee involved.

Workplace Giving

Morgan Stanley’s generous employees give annually through the Annual Appeal, the Firm’s employee charitable giving campaign.  In 2016, employees contributed more than $43 million to benefit more than 10,000 local nonprofit organizations and the core programs of the Morgan Stanley Foundation.


To increase the reach and impact of our employees’ giving, Morgan Stanley offers a unique initiative: Giving Account Rewards.  Employees who contribute through the Annual Appeal are eligible to receive up to $4,000 in matched corporate funds that they can direct to U.S. charities.  Unlike traditional ‘matching gifts’ programs, Giving Account Rewards offer employees the option of directing corporate match dollars towards all U.S. charities, and not only those they have previously funded.   Participating employees may make as many allocations with their accounts as they would like during each year.


Through the Morgan Stanley Foundation and direct corporate contributions, Morgan Stanley Community Affairs provides more than $25 million annually to:

  • Create and deliver excellence in children’s healthcare through the Morgan Stanley Global Alliance for Children’s Health
  • Invest in students to create access and opportunity in the financial services sector for members of underserved communities
  • Encourage, recognize and reward Morgan Stanley employee community engagement

Morgan Stanley Global Alliance for Children’s Health

We invest in innovative childhood wellness programs, so that more children can get the healthy start they need for consistent and meaningful achievement in life.  Our Alliance is focused particularly on addressing root causes of preventable death and disease in young children, and to those partners through which our employees can directly engage in helping children.    This program only funds projects that are national in scope (or that serve a number of major locations across the US).

The flagship of our efforts is our 44-year relationship with the Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital of New York-Presbyterian.  We also focus on providing support to children suffering from malnutrition and food insecurity in the United States and abroad. In addition to our lead partnership with Feeding America, Morgan Stanley is the first major corporate supporter of Grow Clinics, specialty operations that target families with children suffering from medical complications associated with malnourishment primarily due to poverty. 

In 2014, we also launched Morgan Stanley Healthy Cities, an original program designed to bring together the fundamentals – wellness, nutritious foods and safe play – for children in need.  The program is currently running initiatives across the US, in London and in Mumbai.


Morgan Stanley has a long-standing commitment to investing in students in minority and underserved communities. We focus on career development through scholarships, fellowships and internships at both the undergraduate and graduate level.  We give priority to programs serving diverse student populations and to those that offer access to opportunities in the financial services sector.  Our programs include the Richard B. Fisher Scholars Program, a college scholarship, as well as internship initiatives for minorities.

Funding Guidelines and Restrictions


Morgan Stanley initiates the vast majority of our grants.  Therefore, Community Affairs does not accept unsolicited proposals. 

Geographic Scope

Morgan Stanley Community Affairs grants and programs, with few exceptions, benefit U.S.-based charities.  Our funding is limited to national initiatives and those serving multiple cities across the United States.  Our support of local initiatives (serving only one metropolitan area or state) is restricted to those organizations for which our employees are active and ongoing volunteers.  Local grants are therefore coordinated solely through our VIP; charities cannot apply directly for VIP grants.


Morgan Stanley Community Affairs does not make contributions that fall within the following categories:

  • Organizations without 501(c)(3) exemption or other charitable status
  • Special events including dinners, walks, runs and golf events
  • Political causes, candidates, campaigns or lobbying programs
  • Religious, fraternal or professional sports organizations
  • Capital and endowment campaigns outside of our hospital partners
  • Grants to individuals
  • Documentaries, individual performing arts groups or productions


Morgan Stanley Community Affairs
1585 Broadway, 23rd floor
New York, New York 10036