In 2015, the Community Foundation introduced its Enriching Communities, Strengthening Systems, and Shaping Futures grant programs. Since that time, we have awarded over ten million dollars from our discretionary programs to local nonprofits and community-based organizations who provide a necessary safety net for many of our residents as well as cultural programs that make our region a remarkable place to live.
Like the rest of the world, our communities have seen significant changes since 2015. However, our commitment to sustaining an accessible and equitable region remains unchanged. We offer a vision of philanthropy that is rooted in solidarity and recognizes that we are all interconnected. As a community-centered, equity-forward institution, we endeavor to use our resources to catalyze and innovate.
In this spirit, our discretionary programs team will spend most of this year reimagining our grantmaking programs to reflect our values, leading practices in the field, and feedback received from our grant partners. We will also be recruiting for our grant review committee which will allow us to implement more participatory grantmaking processes.
In 2023, we will launch new programs that are more responsive to the needs, ideas, and desires of those who are most proximate to the persistent problems we are facing as a region. We will also introduce accessible application technology that minimizes burdens for our partners. We are so excited to have you on this journey with us.
Please read the information below to learn more about how this might impact your organization, and how you can get involved.
1) Our staff is still available for you! Please do not hesitate to reach out if you have questions or need assistance. There are no significant changes for current grantees, however we will conduct site visits with our 2021 Enriching Community grantees in lieu of an interim report. If you have any questions, please contact Aiyana Marcus at email@example.com.
2) To make way for innovative programs, the Community Foundation is sunsetting its Enriching Communities, Strengthening Systems, & Shaping Futures grant programs. We will not be accepting new applications for these programs in 2022.
3) The Community Foundation will continue to offer capacity building programs including Catchafire subscriptions. All current subscribers will be eligible for renewal in 2022, and there will be additional spaces available for new subscribers. For more information about Catchafire, please click here. Renewals and new subscription applications will be available this summer.
4) Grantmaking continues at the Community Foundation! The changes referenced above only apply to the foundation's discretionary resources. Our donor and committee-advised competitive grant programs are unaffected and will continue to run as usual. For a complete listing of available grants, please click here.
5) In addition to our grantmaking programs, organizations can make funding requests directly to our Donor Advised Fundholder community by submitting an appeal to our Giving Opportunities Newsletter. This quarterly publication is a chance for community-based organizations to share funding needs with our donors. For more information, please review the Giving Opportunities Guidelines. Katie Kling, Sr. Donor Relations Manager, serves as the contact person for this effort and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 434.220.3473.
6) We recognize that many in our region are still impacted by the global pandemic, refugee displacement, and the ongoing effects of racial inequality. We continue to accept requests for up to $10,000 from our Community Emergency Response Fund. Due to the limited availability of funds, please email Eboni Bugg at email@example.com for details on eligibility and how to apply.
We want to hear from you!
Feedback from our grantees has played a significant role in our decision to reimagine and evolve our grantmaking at the Community Foundation. Through surveys, focus groups, site visits, and partner meetings we have learned a lot about your needs, and ways that we can enhance our programming. If you have questions about the redesign process, our priorities, or insights you would like to share, please join us for a listening session on Wednesday, April 27, 2022, at noon. Bring your lunch and your questions! The registration form can be accessed here.