Helping nonprofit partners build a better world.

Our EmpoWWer program allows us to use our gifts for good.

EmpoWWer is our service-grant program, created to support 501(c)(3) community initiatives and continue our tradition of giving back. Framed by three pillars — creativity, shelter and advancement — EmpoWWer provides deserving organizations with an opportunity to apply for resources of time and talent and use our building as an event space. EmpoWWer also gives all of our employees a chance to get involved in supporting important causes and formalizes a commitment to social responsibility Wray Ward has embraced since we opened our doors in 1977.

2024 EmpoWWer Program

The EmpoWWer 2024 program will be open for applications November 1 through December 31, 2023. The review process for all EmpoWWer grants includes thorough evaluations by a committee, weighing the balance of partner needs with available agency resources.

Read about the program pillars below and learn more about past EmpoWWer grant recipients and the programs we created together.

Our dedicated pillars reflect our personal passions and industry expertise to direct our community support initiatives.

Working with community partners to build something special.

PFLAG Charlotte

PFLAG is a national nonprofit dedicated to supporting, educating and advocating for LGBTQ+ people and their families. Like its parent organization, PFLAG Charlotte serves as a bastion of inclusion for all people, offering open and welcoming spaces for parents, caregivers, LGBTQ+ community members and allies. PFLAG Charlotte also provides workshops for companies, health care practices, faith communities, schools and peer support groups.

PFLAG Charlotte leaders asked Wray Ward to help enhance their community outreach efforts by creating two videos: one addressing gender-affirming healthcare and a second detailing the organization’s Navigating Your Journey workshop experience. The resulting videos, filmed with an emotional and authentic lens on a local family and PFLAG community volunteer, will help improve the lives of Charlotte residents and families who may experience marginalization simply because of who they are or how they identify.

“These videos will save lives. By fostering a shared understanding, we’re making progress toward a world where inclusion is celebrated and all people are respected, valued and affirmed.

– Karen Graci, Executive Director, PFLAG Charlotte

United Way of Greater Charlotte

United Way of Greater Charlotte, formerly known as United Way of Central Carolinas, works to facilitate conversations, leverage community voices and bring groups together to address complex economic challenges and social disparities facing people across the Charlotte region.

Wray Ward worked with United Way of Greater Charlotte to develop a brand refresh, including a new name and design elements, as well as the creation of a strategic foundation and a go-to-market strategy to help with fundraising. These efforts supported the United Way of Greater Charlotte by making clear the ways the public identifies with the organization while also enhancing its service to Charlotte’s most marginalized populations and neighborhoods.

“The traditional fundraising and community support model we had relied on didn’t really work anymore. We needed to position the United Way brand in a way that reflects a bold, new approach to how we lift up Charlotte-area nonprofits and communities. Through the EmpoWWer grant, Wray Ward helped us craft a succinct, clear brand positioning that we can lean on to help cultivate, educate, inspire, engage and activate volunteers and donors — creating the foundation needed to drive our work forward.”

Laura Yates Clark, President & CEO, United Way of Greater Charlotte

Charlotte Art League

Charlotte Art League (CAL), Charlotte’s oldest nonprofit art gallery and organization, offers a gateway to the arts for people of all ages and backgrounds through open working studios, classes and community outreach programs, as well as a public gallery.

CAL applied for an EmpoWWer grant to create a visual campaign and marketing communications plan to help the organization increase awareness and pique the interest of the Charlotte area community. Our team delivered a single key message: Unafraid to disrupt the expected artistic experience, CAL is blazing a new path to boundless creative expression. An enhanced logo design, photography POV, media plan and event strategy were also developed to enable CAL to reach out to the community and invite them to help expand the organization and its impact across Charlotte.

“We live in the unusual and disruptive art arena, but Wray Ward went above and beyond what I thought was possible to deliver a campaign that flips art marketing on its head, spins it around and leaves it wondering, What the heck just happened?”

Jim Dukes, Executive Director, Charlotte Art League