The Conrad N. Hilton Foundation announced today that the board of directors approved grants totaling more than $120 million in the fourth quarter of 2021, and a total of $339 million in grants were paid in 2021. This significantly surpasses the dollar amount of grants awarded in 2020 by more than $132 million, in large part thanks to the late Barron Hilton’s bequest to support the philanthropic work of the Hilton Foundation. 

Members of RespectAbility’s Entertainment and News Media Team. RespectAbility is a diverse, disability-led nonprofit that works to create systemic change in how society views and values people with disabilities, and advances policies and practices that empower people with disabilities so they can have a better future.

Pictured: Top row, L-R: Eric Ascher, Stacie M. De Armas, Karen Horne, Lauren Appelbaum, Christine Cadena, Delbert Whetter, Jonathan Murray; bottom row, L-R: Victor Santiago Pineda, Vanni Le, Lesley Hennen, Tatiana Lee.

Photo courtesy of RespectAbility

“2021 marks the largest grantmaking year in the history of the Hilton Foundation,” said Peter Laugharn, president and CEO of the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation. “We are honored and humbled to be in a position of growth, and are thrilled to both expand our long term partnerships and establish new partnerships with organizations and communities leading important work to improve the lives of people all around the world.”

This round of grantmaking includes $6 million within the Foundation’s Equity Fund, which was established in 2020 to address racism and other forms of bias across multiple dimensions, including gender, disability and LGBTQI+ bias. Grants made through the Equity Fund are for general operating support and capacity building to organizations led and governed by historically underrepresented populations in the United States. The Equity Fund increased from $5 million in 2020 to $10 million in 2021.

Following is an overview of the 38 grants awarded in the fourth quarter of 2021 across the Foundation’s program areas, in the United States and internationally.

Catholic Sisters – Catholic Education Foundation was awarded $2.5 million to create a Hilton Scholars program through the Catholic Education Foundation, which provides tuition support for children experiencing disadvantage to attend Catholic elementary schools in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. Catholic Relief Services received $5.4 million to strengthen the capacity of Women Religious in Kenya, Zambia, Malawi and Ghana in Sustainable Comprehensive Responses for Children and their Families in Early Childhood Development (SCORE ECD III). Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR) was granted $3.5 million to support the implementation of a new vision for Emergent Religious Life in the United States, including the creation of a pan-continental Alliance of Religious for the Americas. Hispanics in Philanthropy received $2.1 million to build the capacity of national religious conferences in Mexico, Peru and Colombia to expand ongoing formation opportunities for sisters and reignite sister-led ministries impacted by COVID-19 along the US/Mexico border and across Latin America. Strathmore University was awarded $3.2 million to transform Women Religious’ social ministries into sustainable social enterprises and provide individual and institutional capacity building in leadership, financial and asset management, coaching and mentoring.

Foster Youth – Children’s Defense Fund received $2.45 million to assess outcomes on transition-age foster youth (TAY) related to education, stability and mental health as a result of a time-limited cash transfer in New York City. The Children’s Aid Society received $2 million to strengthen the Fostering Youth Success Alliance coalition in expanding housing and educational supports and to support caregiver recruitment for transition-age foster youth in New York City. Children’s Law Center of California received $3 million to expand the Crossover Advocacy and Resource Effort program that provides legal advocacy and supportive services for foster youth, including crossover youth, survivors of CSEC and young parents in foster care. Coalition for Responsible Community Development received $2.4 million to increase the college and career readiness of youth aging out of foster care and to build out an alumni engagement and post-hire supports program for opportunity youth in South Los Angeles. iFoster Inc. received $3 million to strengthen and expand the delivery of resources for transition-age youth through a robust resource portal, peer navigator system and a national well-being index

Global Early Childhood Development – The Alliance for Early Success was awarded $4 million to support the Alliance for Early Success Pooled Fund – Child Care NEXT initiative that will enable six states to launch transformative child care policy and funding campaigns. Council for a Strong America received $3 million to build bipartisan support to make early childhood a higher public policy priority using leaders from the law enforcement, military and business communities. King Baudouin Foundation United States, Inc. was granted almost $9 million to support the World Health Organization to strengthen health systems to deliver and monitor services that support nurturing care for young children and to ensure global validity of the Global Scale for Early Development. National Women’s Law Center received $2.5 million to stabilize and rebuild the childcare system and to ensure pregnant and parenting students and their children can learn and thrive. PATH was awarded $4.3 million to provide technical assistance to government and local partners to design, test, implement and monitor integrated ECD interventions within national/sub-national health systems in Mozambique and Kenya. The World Bank received $4.5 million to leverage investments in quality childcare to improve outcomes for women, young children, families, businesses and economies.

Homelessness – LA Family Housing Corporation received $4 million to support converting three Project Homekey motels into a total of 249 units of permanent housing in the City of Los Angeles. PATH Ventures received $1.75 million to support converting a Project Homekey motel into 33 units of permanent housing in the City of Los Angeles. The People Concern was awarded $2.45 million to support converting a Project Homekey motel into 21 units of permanent housing in the City of Los Angeles. Special Service for Groups Inc. was granted $3.1 million to support converting a Project Homekey motel into 30 units of permanent housing in the City of Los Angeles. United Way Inc. received $2 million to support the growth and capacity-building of criminal justice-serving organizations to provide housing services and solutions for people experiencing homelessness, leveraging new public investment in Los Angeles County.

Opportunity Youth – Coalition for Responsible Community Development was awarded $700,000 to increase the college and career readiness of youth aging out of foster care and to build out an alumni engagement and post-hire supports program for opportunity youth in South Los Angeles. International Youth Foundation received $2 million to develop a workforce program that braids together federal and municipal resources for opportunity youth in Mexico City.

Safe Water – IRC International Water and Sanitation Centre was awarded almost $5 million to continue to provide systems strengthening and hub support to Ghana, Uganda and globally, as well as $5.41 million to support the Community Water and Sanitation Agency in its growth as a professionalized public utility in Ghana, playing a stronger regulatory role within the sector in the context of rural water reforms in Ghana. Safe Water Network received $5 million to continue implementation of social enterprise model for safely managed water in Ghana, with global knowledge generation. Splash International was granted $3.75 million to implement a safe water delivery model for schools in Bahir Dar, Ethiopia, and create the groundwork to replicate the model into the rural safe water focal districts in Amhara region. Water.Org Inc. was awarded $1.66 million to improve water service access by working with financial institutions to scale up financial lending products to households and enterprises in Uganda. Water4, Inc. was awarded $4.3 million to renew service delivery model in Wassa East, Ghana, and advocate for contractual arrangement. World Resources Institute received $3 million to promote Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) and environmental sustainability across local, regional and national levels to enhance sustainable water access and livelihoods in Ethiopia.

Equity Fund – First Nations Development Institute was awarded $1 million to support the California Tribal Fund, a Native American-controlled grantmaking initiative to support California-based, nonprofits and tribal programs. Silicon Valley Community Foundation was granted $4 million to provide ongoing support for the California Black Freedom Fund, a 5-year pooled fund supporting Black-led organizations addressing the multiple and intersecting harms of systemic racism, systemic violence and racial inequities faced by California Black communities. RespectAbility, a diverse, disability-led nonprofit organization whose mission is to fight stigmas and advance opportunities so people with disabilities can fully participate in all aspects of community,was awarded $1 million for general operating support.

Other Grants – Baby2Baby received $100,000 to support the COVID-19 Emergency Response Program to provide essential items to children and families living in poverty. BudgIT Foundation for Promotion of Information Technology in Nigeria received $1 million to support phase II of the COVID Transparency and Accountability Project in Ghana, Kenya and Malawi to engage citizens in resource tracking, improve vaccine equity and increase awareness of the need for vaccines on the continent. Nonprofit Finance Fund received $9 million to provide a program-related investment (PRI) to establish a revolving loan fund to make bridge loans to U.S.-based Hilton Foundation grantees, as well as $1 million to support the launch and administration of the Hilton Foundation bridge loan program and provide technical assistance to applicants and borrowers. Sightsavers Inc. received $2.5 million to support the Tanzania national trachoma program to eliminate the trichiasis backlog in six districts in Arusha and Manyara regions.

To learn more about our program areas and how we approach our work, please visit For more detailed information on our grantmaking, please visit