Union Pacific Foundation has begun distributing $389,500 in grants to 39 Utah institutions, said foundation president Charles N. Olsen.

Final distribution will be made in October to United Way organizations.Salt Lake area recipients are Ballet West, The Children's Center, Children's Museum of Utah, Cooperative Security Corp.-Welfare Committee, The Cottage Program, Greater Salt Lake Area Shelter the Homeless Committee, Holy Cross Hospital, Junior Achievement of Utah, LDS Hospital, Mountain West Friends of Hospitalized Children, National Energy Foundation, Odyssey House of Utah, Primary Children's Medical Center, Repertory Dance Theater, Salt Lake Acting Company, Salt Lake Art Center, Salt Lake Boys and Girls Clubs, Salt Lake Opera Theater, the Salvation Army, Sundance Institute for Film and Television.

Also, United Way of the Great Salt Lake Area, Utah Heritage Foundation, Utah Museum of Natural History, Utah Opera Company, Utah Symphony, Western Independent Colleges Fund, Westminster College and the YMCA of Greater Salt Lake Area.

Other Utah recipients: Laubach Literacy International-Intermountain office, Coalville, Summit County; United Way of Cache Valley, Logan; Milford United Way and Milford Valley Memorial Hospital, Millard County; Cottonwood Alta View Health Care Foundation, Murray; St. Benedict's Foundation; Union Station Foundation; United Way of Northern Utah; and Your Community Connection of Ogden/-Northern Utah, all of Ogden; and Brigham Young University and United Way of Utah County, Provo.

Union Pacific Foundation will give $7.2 million during 1989 to more than 775 institutions of higher education, health, social welfare and the arts, located primarily in the Western states served by U.P.'s operating companies. They are Union Pacific Railroad Co. Union Pacific Resources Co. and Union Pacific Realty Co.