Since 1996, the Cracker Barrel Old Country Store Foundation has awarded more than $7 million dollars in grants to support programs related to education, human services, cultural affairs and the environment. Special consideration is given to programs that improve access to education, strengthen the bonds of military families, and provide opportunities for minorities, children, and low-income families. By focusing our efforts on these areas — and choosing the right partners — we believe the Cracker Barrel Foundation can make a deeper, more meaningful, and lasting impact.

Program Highlights

Strengthening the Bonds of Military Families

As part of the company’s commitment to military personnel, the Cracker Barrel Foundation is proud to support programs that keep family bonds strong among those who serve in our armed forces.

Since 2001, military families have experienced unprecedented time apart due to deployments—causing added stress and anxiety for the service member, his or her spouse, and children.

Cracker Barrel is a proud partner with the following agencies who are helping to improve the quality of lives of our military families:

United Through Reading offers military service members the opportunity to read books to their children at home. The program creates emotional connections between parents and their children, encourages literacy, and makes homecomings easier.

Canine Companions for Independence works with trained service dogs, wounded veterans, and an additional person to enhance a veteran’s quality of life and regain independence after injury.

Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation honors the sacrifices of military heroes by ensuring the success of their children through college education. Since 2002, Children of Fallen Patriots has provided more than $9.2 million in total assistance, including college scholarships, supplemental grants and educational counseling to military children who have lost a parent in the line of duty.


The Cracker Barrel Foundation believes that with appropriate educational opportunities, students are empowered with the necessary skills to become productive members of society. We look to partner with programs that promote literacy, open avenues to academic success, lead to more career opportunities, and/or facilitate access to higher education. In particular, the need to promote opportunities for higher education is of significant emphasis to the Foundation. With this goal in mind, the Cracker Barrel Foundation believes that focusing on minority and disadvantaged students is the best way to enhance economic opportunity for all.

Cracker Barrel Foundation has partnered with the Hispanic College Fund and two Historically Black College and Universities, Tennessee State University and Fisk University, to provide scholarships. We support programming of the following organizations that provide essential tools for improving access to education: Oasis Center, Martha O’Bryan Center, Nashville Public Television, and Avenida Guadalupe Association.

The Cracker Barrel Employee Scholarship Program

The Cracker Barrel Employee Scholarship Program is another critical piece in the Cracker Barrel Foundation’s goal to increase access to education, and thus improve economic opportunities. The program recognizes and rewards the accomplishments of Cracker Barrel employees and their dependents that excel in their studies and serve their communities.

The Foundation has awarded over 800 scholarships, totaling more than $1 million.

The Scholarship Program is in effect from January 1 through April 1. This year, we are awarding 33 $2,500 scholarships. High school seniors, college freshmen, sophomores, and juniors are eligible if they meet the following criteria:

  • The dependent children of employees who have completed at least one year of employment as of January 1 of the year the scholarship is awarded and have worked an average of 20 hours a week during that period, or
  • Employees who have completed at least one year of employment as of January 1 of the year the scholarship is awarded and have worked an average of 20 hours a week during that period.

Scholarship winners will be chosen in May 2016 by a panel of educators. Selection for the scholarships will be based on academic achievement, work experience, school and community involvement, and financial need, which is a new requirement.

The 33 scholarships will be distributed evenly among the 10 regions, Home Office and Distribution Center. Winners must enroll in accredited, nonprofit colleges, universities, vocational or technical schools as full-time students in the fall of 2016.

Click here to apply or call 877-525-8491 to request a paper application.

Returning applicants may be asked for a pass code. Please use barrel as the code to apply for the Cracker Barrel scholarship.

Applying for Grants

The Cracker Barrel Foundation is eager to learn more about organizations with goals that align with our priorities.

To apply for a grant, please submit a preliminary one- or two-page letter of inquiry to the Cracker Barrel Foundation.

Include the following information in the letter of inquiry:

  • Description of the proposed project
  • Project goals and objectives
  • Level of funding required

The letter should be emailed to

If interested, we will ask for a full proposal and send more information about the application process.

For the current funding cycle, grant applications should be submitted by Dec. 31, 2015. Grant recipients will be selected and announced by the end of April 2016.

Unfortunately, we are unable to fund every quality program or organization for which we receive requests. Please understand that this is a reflection of limited available resources, and not upon the worthiness of the organization.

For information on how to request a charitable donation, click here.