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Grant Seeker Guidelines
1. WHO IS ELIGIBLE TO APPLY?
We consider grant applications from organizations that:
- Are determined as charitable under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, public entities or other charitable, educational or cultural organizations.
- Provide programs and services to the following counties in Georgia: Richmond, Columbia, McDuffie, Burke and in South Carolina: Aiken and Edgefield.
2. WHAT DOES THE COMMUNITY FOUNDATION FUND?
Currently, we consider and fund applications in the following program areas:
Recognizing the positive impact arts, cultural and historical organizations have on a community, we welcome innovative and high-quality applications in this area.
- Education/Youth Enrichment
We welcome applications from organizations that provide enrichment and educational opportunities to disadvantaged children, youth and adults. Examples include: job skill training and/or placement, after school or summer programs, leadership, tutoring, GED and literacy programs.
Some examples of programs in this funding area include: environmental research or management, animal services, programs that support sustainable community and backyard gardens, medical clinics, drug rehabilitation programs, medical programs for persons with disabilities, and mental illness.
- People in Need
This category is generally, but not exclusively for human service programs that work with people in need. Examples include: feeding, housing, financial assistance, programs serving the homelessness, and programs for recently incarcerated individuals.
3. CAN ORGANIZATIONS APPLY FOR CONTINUED FUNDING?
If an organization has received funding for two consecutive years they must take one year off before applying again.
4. WHAT IS THE RANGE OF GRANTS?
We do not set a minimum amount for grant awards. We ask that requests not exceed $15,000.00. We will only accept one grant application per 501(c)(3) per Community Grants Program cycle.
5. IS THERE A MATCH REQUIREMENT FOR FUNDS RECEIVED?
It is preferred, but not required that grants are matched by funding from other sources.
6. WHAT ACTIVITIES TYPICALLY DO NOT RECEIVE FUNDING?
We do not fund applications in support of the following:
- Grants for individuals;
- Capital campaigns;
- Deficit financing and debt retirement;
- Political organization or campaigns;
- Lobbying legislators or influencing elections;
- Special fundraising events/celebration functions;
- Marketing endeavors and personal research, unless the marketing is directly connected to the program in your grant application;
- Core operating expenses for public and private elementary and secondary schools and public and private colleges and universities;
- Projects that are typically the funding responsibility of federal, state or local governments;
- Scholarship programs; however, exceptions are made for summer camp or afterschool program scholarships;
- Programs that have already taken place or will be completed in the current calendar year;
7. ARE NEW ORGANIZATIONS ELIGIBLE?
We will consider funding new organizations for start-up or operating support. However, because we are interested in funding work that continues to address community needs long after the grant funds are depleted, these requests are reviewed carefully on a case-by-case basis and must make a convincing case that:
- The condition the proposal addresses is significant and can be measured;
- The applicant has the organizational ability to address the problem, can document an unmet need, is aware of other organizations that are working in the same area and is the best organization to do this work;
- The organization and its program are likely to achieve the outcomes described in the proposal;
- The organization has plans in place to ensure that its programs will continue to operate once grants funds are expended.
8. WHAT CRITERIA SHOULD APPLICATIONS EMPHASIZE?
We look for proposals that:
- Have a program/project that will positively impact persons and/or the community.
- Develop competencies and skills enabling individuals to live fuller, more productive lives;
- Addresses a significant need affecting the region's population or special populations;
- Have the ability to leverage resources through other funding, in-kind donations, volunteers and partnerships;
- Demonstrate their capacity to provide the necessary services using good administrative and financial management;
When evaluating requests, we also consider the balance of geography and the needs within our six-county service area.
9. HOW DOES AN ORGANIZATION APPLY FOR A GRANT?
Any 501(c)(3) organization interested in seeking grant support should follow these steps:
- Review the Guidelines for Unrestricted Grants and determine if your organization is eligible to compete for funds. You can contact Rebecca Wallace, the Director of Grants and Community Engagement, at 706-724-1314, to help you make that decision;
- Click application link, create a user account, record your login user name and password for future logins. You do not have to do an entire application in one setting;
- Once your account has been created you will be asked a few pre-qualifying questions and will upload some basic organizational information. After staff has reviewed your prequalifying information and determined if you qualify (usually within one business day) you will receive an email letting you know if you qualified, and if so, a link to fill out a full application.
Applications must be submitted by 12:00 pm Friday, August 17th.
10. WHERE DO I CALL IF I HAVE QUESTIONS?
We welcome your questions and comments. Please call or email Rebecca Wallace, the Director of Gants and Community Engagement at 706-724-1314 / firstname.lastname@example.org.